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United States Department of the Interior National Park Service

National Register of Historic Places Registration Form This form is for use in nominating or requesting determinations for individual properties and districts. See instructions in National Register Bulletin, How to Complete the National Register of Historic Places Registration Form. If any item does not apply to the property being documented, enter "N/A" for "not applicable." For functions, architectural classification, materials, and areas of significance, enter only categories and subcategories from the instructions. Place additional certification comments, entries, and narrative items on continuation sheets if needed (NPS Form 10-900a).

1. Name of Property

Pratt Gin Factory

historic name

other names/site number

Continental Eagle Cotton Gin Factory

2. Location street & number 201 Gin Shop Hill Road city or town state

not for publication

Prattville

vicinity

Alabama

code

AL

county Autauga

code

001

zip code

36067-3705

3. State/Federal Agency Certification As the designated authority under the National Historic Preservation Act, as amended, I hereby certify that this _x__ nomination _ request for determination of eligibility meets the documentation standards for registering properties in the National Register of Historic Places and meets the procedural and professional requirements set forth in 36 CFR Part 60. In my opinion, the property x _ meets _ does not meet the National Register Criteria. I recommend that this property be considered significant at the following level(s) of significance: x

national

x

statewide

x local

Signature of certifying official/Title

Date

State or Federal agency/bureau or Tribal Government In my opinion, the property

meets

does not meet the National Register criteria.

Signature of commenting official

Title

Date

State or Federal agency/bureau or Tribal Government

4. National Park Service Certification I hereby certify that this property is: entered in the National Register

determined eligible for the National Register

determined not eligible for the National Register

removed from the National Register

other (explain:)

Signature of the Keeper

5. Classification

_________________

Date of Action


Pratt Gin Factory Name of Property

Autauga County, Alabama County and State

Ownership of Property

Category of Property

Number of Resources within Property

(Check as many boxes as apply.)

(Check only one box.)

(Do not include previously listed resources in the count.)

x

Private

X building(s)

public – Local public – State public – Federal

Contributing 3

Noncontributing 0

0 0 0 3

0 0 0 0

district Site structure object

Name of related multiple property listing (Enter "N/A" if property is not part of a multiple property listing)

Buildings Sites Structures Objects

Total

Number of contributing resources previously listed in the National Register

N/A

0

6. Function or Use Historic Functions

Current Functions

(Enter categories from instructions.)

(Enter categories from instructions.)

Industry

None

Manufacturing Facility Cotton Gin Factory

7. Description Architectural Classification

Materials

(Enter categories from instructions.)

(Enter categories from instructions.)

Other: Cotton Gin Factory

foundation: walls:

Brick

Brick Wood

roof:

Asphalt

other:

Terra cotta

Narrative Description 2


Pratt Gin Factory Name of Property

Autauga County, Alabama County and State

(Describe the historic and current physical appearance of the property. Explain contributing and noncontributing resources if necessary. Begin with a summary paragraph that briefly describes the general characteristics of the property, such as its location, setting, size, and significant features.) Summary Paragraph Daniel Pratt built his cotton gin factory from 1854 to 1855 in what would become Prattville, Alabama. The factory itself is 250 feet by 50 feet, designed in an L-shape. The building has an abutting southwest end of sash, door, and blind factory and is three stories in height. The main components are brick and wood with a shingle roof. The ridge of the roof has a square belfry with oval apertures. On the east wall there are three raised wooden letters from a sign that once spelled out the name of the company. The company building is a later addition to the complex on the southwest side of Autauga Creek. Built in 1896, rectangular in shape with twenty-five bays long with intervening piers, a gable roof, and sashing along the side. In raised lettering above the door, in what appears to be a terra cotta material, are the words “Daniel Pratt Gin Co.”. This is the last major phase of expansion before Pratt merged with Continental Gin in 1899. The Continental Gin Company Warehouse was built in 1911. It is a four story rectangular brick building totaling 170 feet by 60 feet. It includes seventeen bays long with arched windows, a gable roof and open layout on each floor. This site was the former home of the church and store built in 1853 by Daniel Pratt. ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Narrative Description In 1833, Daniel Pratt, originally of New Hampshire, brought his wife Ester, daughter Ellen and two slaves to Central Alabama. At the time, this part of Alabama was particularly dangerous, as there was much conflict between the settlers and the Creek Indians. He started the Daniel Pratt Gin Company to manufacture cotton gins, utilizing the rivers to transport his gins. He spent $20,000 on 1, 822 acres of land near the Autauga Creek in 1838 to build a permanent factory and start the town he named Prattville. He built homes, churches, stores, and Alabama’s first free school for his workers. Daniel Pratt is credited for keeping Alabama functioning after the Civil War, though his businesses did take quite a hit. He manufactured cotton gins for global use, and even founded a newspaper in 1854, called the Southern Statesmen. Pratt opposed secession, but supported the “Prattville Dragoons, part of the Third Alabama Calvary, with clothing, blankets, and financial support. When Daniel Pratt died on May 13, 1873, his estate was divided between his daughter Ellen and adopted son, Merrill, who was actually his nephew, and the business was sold in 1889 to Continental Gin Company. It is now known as the Continental Eagle Corporation; however, the Prattville, Alabama, factory Pratt built is still in use by this gin manufacturing company. These are believed to be the longest continuously occupied industrial buildings in the state, if not the entire South. He also founded a blast furnace in Birmingham during his time and helped develop the iron industry in the city. A surprising and little known fact about Pratt is that he is indirectly responsible for the rise of an African –American middle class in the former slave state. His illegitimate son and slave, Charles Atwood, invested in the railroad business ran by Daniel Pratt and helped create this middle-class. The Charles Atwood house is located in the center of Prattville. Majority of the original buildings survive but is currently not used today, but still owned Continental Eagle Gin Company, Many original buildings were destroyed by a fire in 2002. Today, the infrastructure of the town is quite different than in the late 1830’s when the factory was originally built, but the town has managed to preserve many of the original buildings surrounding the factory. The 32 acres the original factory and surrounding surviving buildings are currently for sale, and are at risk for being destroyed. Unfortunately, the building is currently abandoned and has laws against trespassing. It is completely surrounded by an estimated ten foot fence, and one cannot see up close or inside the buildings. 8. Statement of Significance

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Pratt Gin Factory Name of Property

Autauga County, Alabama County and State

Applicable National Register Criteria

Areas of Significance

(Mark "x" in one or more boxes for the criteria qualifying the property for National Register listing.)

(Enter categories from instructions.)

Manufacturing X X

A

Property is associated with events that have made a significant contribution to the broad patterns of our history.

B

Property is associated with the lives of persons significant in our past.

C

Property embodies the distinctive characteristics of a type, period, or method of construction or represents the work of a master, or possesses high artistic values, or represents a significant and distinguishable entity whose components lack individual distinction.

Daniel Pratt

Period of Significance 1833 to 1873 Antebellum Period in Alabama

D

Property has yielded, or is likely to yield, information important in prehistory or history.

Significant Dates N/A

Criteria Considerations (Mark "x" in all the boxes that apply.)

Property is: A

Owned by a religious institution or used for religious purposes.

B

removed from its original location.

C

a birthplace or grave.

D

a cemetery.

E

a reconstructed building, object, or structure.

F

a commemorative property.

G

less than 50 years old or achieving significance within the past 50 years.

Significant Person (Complete only if Criterion B is marked above.)

Pratt, Daniel

Cultural Affiliation N/A

Architect/Builder Pratt, Daniel

Period of Significance (justification) In 1838, Daniel Pratt established his gin company and created the town of Prattville. Prattville quickly branched out to the larger cities of Montgomery and Birmingham in the state of Alabama, creating quite the industrial boom for a what was once a rural area. Prattville today is one of the fastest growing areas in the state, and the original Pratt factory building is still standing and in use. The ending period of significance is the date in which Pratt died, leaving his company to his children, who sold it off. Daniel Pratt was the driving force behind many industrious decisions of Montgomery, Birmingham and Prattville during his lifetime, which ended in 1873. Statement of Significance Summary Paragraph (Provide a summary paragraph that includes level of significance and applicable criteria.) 4


Pratt Gin Factory Name of Property

Autauga County, Alabama County and State

Daniel Pratt’s Gin Factory is being nominated for the National Register because of its significance in the field of industry locally, statewide and nationally. He revolutionized the cotton gin and produced them for a global market, putting his town of Prattville, Alabama, and the south on the map during the Antebellum period. This building represents an important aspect of the industrialization of our country, and has strong ties to state and local history as well. Daniel Pratt is an influential part of Alabama’s history, as founder of continuously thriving city and his role in industrialization in Montgomery and Birmingham. ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Narrative Statement of Significance (Provide at least one paragraph for each area of significance.)

This building is significant for local, state, and national history as a part of our industrial heritage. Its connection to the builder and business owner Daniel Pratt is quite significant, as he is the founder of the city of Prattville, designed for his workers comfort. This is comparable to the Lowell factory in Massachusetts or other mill towns of later years. Having the designation as a historical landmark will possible prevent the sale and potential destruction of this piece of history. This building is a reminder of the hard work and industrious nature of people who helped our country grow, and allows the story of the workers and their lives to be interpreted and told the generations of the future. Original buildings are still intact that are associated with the factory, as the original open floor plan on each story allowed for newer equipment to replace the old equipment. There is still evidence of the original factory operating equipment in some areas. The location on the Autauga Creek, next to several other significant industrial buildings is relevant to the theory that towns were built around industry, and explains the urbanization and semi-progressiveness of the town throughout history. Daniel Pratt himself is a significant figure in Alabama and national history, as a industrial leader, town developer, financier and overall interesting character. This building is worthy of preservation, as its history is deep and rich, and significant in several areas of local, state and national history. It is considered one of the longest continuously operating factories in the South. ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Developmental history/additional historic context information (if appropriate) 9. Major Bibliographical References Bibliography (Cite the books, articles, and other sources used in preparing this form.) Continental Eagle Corporation. Pratt History. Prattville, Alabama. www.PrattHistory.com. (Accessed October 10, 2011.) Evans, Curtis J. The Conquest of Labor: Daniel Pratt and Southern Industrialization. Baton Rouge, Louisiana: Louisiana State University Press, 2001. Miller, Randall M. The Cotton Mill Movement in Antebellum Alabama. Dissertation in American Economic History, Randall Martin Miller, 1971. http://books.google.com/books?id=zU98siUTwcQC&pg=PA39&lpg=PA39&dq= pratt+gin+factory+bibliography&source=bl&ots=COAbcF_ZeN&sig=5T_DqjpQB14zQPrt7NbpXaVpb8c&hl=en&ei= NbygTq3EEMijtgf6u9WhBQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=4&ved=0CCwQ6AEwAw#v=onepage&q&f =false. (Accessed October 15, 2011).

Previous documentation on file (NPS): preliminary determination of individual listing (36 CFR 67 has been requested) previously listed in the National Register

Primary location of additional data: x State Historic Preservation Office x Other State agency Federal agency

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Pratt Gin Factory Name of Property

Autauga County, Alabama County and State

previously determined eligible by the National Register designated a National Historic Landmark recorded by Historic American Buildings Survey #____________ recorded by Historic American Engineering Record # __________ recorded by Historic American Landscape Survey # ___________

Local government University Other Name of repository:

Historic Resources Survey Number (if assigned): 10. Geographical Data Acreage of Property 32 (Do not include previously listed resource acreage.)

UTM References (Place additional UTM references on a continuation sheet.)

1

3 Zone

Easting

Northing

Zone

Easting

Northing

2

Zone

Easting

Northing

Zone

Easting

Northing

4

Verbal Boundary Description (Describe the boundaries of the property.) The boundary of the Pratt Gin Factory is illustrated by the map. Boundary Justification (Explain why the boundaries were selected.) Boundaries are laid out in the original design, now bounded by roads and adjacent building properties. 11. Form Prepared By name/title

Brittany Austin

organization

date October 17, 2011

street & number 182 Gardenia Road

telephone 205-534-7001

city or town Millbrook

state

e-mail

AL

zip code

BAustin606@gmail.com

Additional Documentation Submit the following items with the completed form: 

Maps: A USGS map (7.5 or 15 minute series) indicating the property's location. 32°27'35"N

86°28'39"W

A Sketch map for historic districts and properties having large acreage or numerous resources. Key all photographs to this map. 

Continuation Sheets 6


Pratt Gin Factory Name of Property



Autauga County, Alabama County and State

Additional items: (Check with the SHPO or FPO for any additional items.)

7


Pratt Gin Factory Name of Property

Autauga County, Alabama County and State

Photographs: Submit clear and descriptive photographs. The size of each image must be 1600x1200 pixels at 300 ppi (pixels per inch) or larger. Key all photographs to the sketch map. Name of Property: Pratt Gin Company (Continental Eagle Cotton Gin Company) City or Vicinity: Prattville County: Autauga

State: AL

Photographer: Robert Gamble, Alabama Historical Commission Date Photographed: May 1984 Description of Photograph(s) and number: 8


Pratt Gin Factory Name of Property

Autauga County, Alabama County and State

Looking SW toward Bush Hog/Continental Gin Complex (original Pratt Factory Complex) 1 of _9_.

Name of Property: Pratt Gin Company (Continental Eagle Cotton Gin Company) City or Vicinity: Prattville County: Autauga

State: AL

Photographer: Brittany Austin Date Photographed: October 19, 2011 Description of Photograph(s) and number: Continental Gin company, current owner of original buildings and property. 2 of _9 .

9


Pratt Gin Factory Name of Property

Autauga County, Alabama County and State

Name of Property: Pratt Gin Company (Continental Eagle Cotton Gin Company) City or Vicinity: Prattville County: Autauga

State: AL

Photographer: Brittany Austin Date Photographed: October 20, 2011 Description of Photograph(s) and number: Only view of factory complex allowed without trespassing. 3 of 9 .

Name of Property: Pratt Gin Company (Continental Eagle Cotton Gin Company) City or Vicinity: Prattville County: Autauga

State: AL

Photographer: Brittany Austin Date Photographed: October 20, 2011 Description of Photograph(s) and number: View of fence completing surrounding property. 4 of 9 .

10


Pratt Gin Factory Name of Property

Autauga County, Alabama County and State

Name of Property: Pratt Gin Company (Continental Eagle Cotton Gin Company) City or Vicinity: Prattville County: Autauga

State: AL

Photographer: Brittany Austin Date Photographed: October 19, 2011 Description of Photograph(s) and number: View of original factory. 5 of __9 .

Name of Property: Pratt Gin Company (Continental Eagle Cotton Gin Company) 11


Pratt Gin Factory Name of Property

Autauga County, Alabama County and State

City or Vicinity: Prattville County: Autauga

State: AL

Photographer: Brittany Austin Date Photographed: October 20, 2011 Description of Photograph(s) and number: Main street view of property. 6 of 9 .

Name of Property: Pratt Gin Company (Continental Eagle Cotton Gin Company) City or Vicinity: Prattville County: Autauga

State: AL

Photographer: Brittany Austin Date Photographed: October 20, 2011 Description of Photograph(s) and number: Factory parts outside of property. 7 of 9 .

12


Pratt Gin Factory Name of Property

Autauga County, Alabama County and State

Name of Property: Pratt Gin Company (Continental Eagle Cotton Gin Company) City or Vicinity: Prattville County: Autauga

State: AL

Photographer: Brittany Austin Date Photographed: October 20, 2011 Description of Photograph(s) and number: Looking SW toward Bush Hog/Continental Gin Complex (original Pratt Factory Complex) 8 of _9 .

Name of Property: Pratt Gin Company (Continental Eagle Cotton Gin Company) City or Vicinity: Prattville

13


Pratt Gin Factory Name of Property

County: Autauga

Autauga County, Alabama County and State

State: AL

Photographer: Brittany Austin Date Photographed: October 20, 2011 Description of Photograph(s) and number: Main street view of Pratt Gin Company. 9 of _9__.

Property Owner: (Complete this item at the request of the SHPO or FPO.)

Name

Continental Eagle Gin Company

street & number

telephone

city or town

state

zip code

Paperwork Reduction Act Statement: This information is being collected for applications to the National Register of Historic Places to nominate properties for listing or determine eligibility for listing, to list properties, and to amend existing listings. Response to this request is required to obtain a benefit in accordance with the National Historic Preservation Act, as amended (16 U.S.C.460 et seq.). Estimated Burden Statement: Public reporting burden for this form is estimated to average 18 hours per response including time for reviewing instructions, gathering and maintaining data, and completing and reviewing the form. Direct comments regarding this burden estimate or any aspect of this form to the Office of Planning and Performance Management. U.S. Dept. of the Interior, 1849 C. Street, NW, Washington, DC.

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National Register Nomination-Pratt Gin Factory  

Signature of commenting official Date United States Department of the Interior National Park Service other (explain:) _________________ Titl...

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