Badin Historic Museum Tour
The Hardaway Site
Welcome to Badin Historic Museum. The story of our town begins circa 10,000 BC when Native Americans camped on the hill above the falls of our river and fashioned spearheads from outcroppings of rhyolite rock. Many native tribes followed, using this area until the 1700’s. Settlers arrived in the 1600’s and 1700’s and the river was given a name: the Yadkin. Its rushing waters were instrumental in the beginning of our town when…
Old Whitney (click on the image)
…in 1901, the Whitney Dam was started a few miles above the Narrows of the Yadkin River and close to the village of Palmerville. This was to provide hydro-electric power for the Whitney mining operations. A canal was dug, a clubhouse built and plans were laid out for a village. However, in 1907 the Whitney project declared bankruptcy. Disappointment was keenly felt throughout Stanly County. Palmerville went on about its business and the river continued to flow untamed until…
The French Connection
…1912. A French company, L’Aluminium Francais, bought the Whitney holdings and continued work on the dam. After a new survey late in 1912, it was decided to abandon the current site and begin anew a few miles downstream at the Narrows of the Yadkin River. Again, a dam was started and a clubhouse built. A small town was laid out and named after the manager of the project, Adrien Badin. And so our town began to rise out of Stanly County’s rolling farmland. The work went apace until…
The Narrows Dam
…1914. World War I erupted in Europe. Many French workers were reservists in the French Army and French lines of credit were re-directed to the war effort. Once more, Stanly County was bitterly disappointed as the French closed down operations and sought a buyer for its unfinished project. They found one in November of 1915 when the Aluminum Company of America (ALCOA) bought the half finished plant and town at a bargain price. Work on the dam and the town continued.
World War I
After America joined World War I in 1917, many of Badin’s young men enlisted in the services and left for the front lines…
World War II, Police and Firefighters
…and since that time Badin residents have continued to serve their country. In 1941, America joined in World War II and many sons and daughters of Badin defended their country once again. Many have done and continue to do their duty to the Badin community as volunteer firemen or professional police officers. We are proud of the men and women who protect…
…the businesses, churches, and residences that make up the community. Although downtown is small now, we are proud of its heritage and…
…we are proud of our local school. Once we had two fine schools and this museum served as the local kindergarten. The First Graduating Class of Badin School: Miss Ruth Valentine, Miss Sallie Jenkins, Miss Josie Crisco & Withers Pannill, Absent – Miss Ruth Cowart The town’s people encouraged school sports and…
…many other local sports teams. The town boasted a large ball field with bleachers and concession stands. Teams were sponsored by…
Social and Cultural
…local fraternal organizations, businesses and churches. The town had an opera house and a fine hospital, the first in Stanly County. There was a scout troop and a local band.
Badin had its share of memorable characters. At right, Stanly County Country Club golf pro, Earl Estridge, examines a golf club with world renowned golfer Johnny Palmer.
From Company Town to Incorporation
Badin was a company town until 1990 when it incorporated and elected its first Mayor and Town Council pictured here.
Left to Right
Andrew Herbert Hinson, Councilman
James L. Harrison, Councilman
Jay Weemhof, Councilman
John T. Garrison, Mayor
Seated: Ida Mae Stovall, Mayor Pro tem
Alcoa has played a vital role in the town. So it is fitting for us to end the tour of our museum with an early photograph of the company.