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Oral History Interview with David R. Hayworth, February 6, 1997. Interview I-0099. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007).
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  • Abstract
    David R. Hayworth's father started Hayworth Roll and Panel—"the first and oldest plywood company in North Carolina"—with his two brothers, creating what would become a nationally competitive office furniture company and a thriving family business. Hayworth's mother took over the High Point, North Carolina, company after her husband's death, eventually leaving control to her sons. In this interview, Hayworth recounts some of this family history, and chronicles some of the changes that have taken place in the furniture industry since the 1950s. These changes include the rise of major manufacturers who pushed out smaller companies with their ability to maintain dealerships around the country, as well as the advent of the open office system, the now familiar office layout that relies on partitions to separate workers. Hayworth Roll and Panel weathered these changes, and David R. Hayworth describes them, as well as the personalities who guided the company through difficult times. This interview will be of particular interest to researchers concerned with the intricacies of the furniture manufacturing industry.
    Excerpts
  • The unique challenge of the office furniture business
  • Transitions in the office furniture industry
  • Competing to build open-office systems
  • Need for speedy shipping in the office furniture business
  • Careful management of different elements of one company
  • Fond memories of a hotel
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  • The Southern Oral History Program transcripts presented here on Documenting the American South undergo an editorial process to remove transcription errors. Texts may differ from the original transcripts held by the Southern Historical Collection.

    Funding from the Institute for Museum and Library Services supported the electronic publication of this title.