Field to Fabric
The Story of American Cotton Growers
Published by: Texas Tech University Press
Imprint: Texas Tech University Press
- Published: January 1990
From its beginnings, American Cotton Growers strove toward ever more effective processing and marketing of the cotton grown on the High Plains. The men who were the driving force behind ACG realized what enormous benefits were possible if the cotton that was grown here and ginned here could also be processed, spun, and woven into fabric before it was shipped elsewhere. Transforming their vision into the construction and successful operation of a denim mill was an enormous gamble. Only with the mutual support, respect, and sheer stick-to-itiveness of ACG members, bankers, and Levi Strauss & Co. would this venture pan out—as indeed it did. Eventually comprising not only the successful denim mill but also 27 participating gin communities, the organization proved a venerable pioneer in agribusiness. Since the early 1900s, cotton has shaped the economy and growth of the Texas High Plains. Against the backdrop of the burgeoning West Texas cotton industry, Field to Fabric details the workings of its most vigorous proponent. Woven like the sturdy denim they produced are the expectations, strategies, and interactions of men who could see the future. Yet not even the organization’s visionaries could anticipate how widespread their influence would be—that the entire cotton industry would feel their impact. The efforts of those who founded and nurtured ACG led to industry acceptance of high-volume-instrumentation classification and utilization of open-end spinning for short-staple cotton. Through the reflections of the builders and supporters of ACG, Field to Fabric conveys the vitality that forged this successful West Texas enterprise, and the trials and tribulations to which it refused to succumb.