Thomasville Furniture Industries

  • 1904: Thomasville Chair Co. is founded.
  • 1909: Bard Lumber and Manufacturing Co., Thomasville, maker of dining chairs and rockers is acquired.
  • 1914: Cramer Furniture Co., Thomasville, chair manufacturer, is acquired.
  • 1921: The Thomasville Big Chair, an 18-foot reproduction of a Duncan Phyfe design was fist erected. (Rebuilt in 1951).
  • 1932: Bankrupt Lambeth Furniture Co. is acquired for production of living room, dining room, bedroom furniture.
  • 1955: Defunct Thomasville Furniture Co. plant is acquired to produce living room tables.
  • 1961: Thomasville Chair, B.F. Huntley Furniture Co. of Winston-Salem merge, corporate name changes to Thomasville Furniture Industries Inc.
  • 1962: TFI becomes publicly held company with 344,000 share offering.
  • 1964: TFI stock is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
  • 1964: Phoenix Chair Co. of West Jefferson is acquired.
  • 1965: Founders Furniture of Pleasant Garden is acquired to produce modern contemporary case goods.
  • 1966: Western Carolina Furniture Co., Hickory, manufacturer of upholstered furniture, is acquired.
  • 1968: Caldwell Furniture, Lenoir, bedroom furniture producer, is acquired.
  • 1968: TFI is acquired by Armstrong Cork Co. (later Armstrong World Industries).
  • 1973:/ 74: Showroom/office building is completed in Thomasville.
  • 1977: Idle metal works plant in Brookneal, Va., is acquired for assembling and finishing of TFI furniture.
  • 1982: Pleasant Garden plant closes.
  • 1986: Pleasant Garden plant reopens to make contract furniture.
  • 1986: Gilliam Furniture, Statesville, upholstered furniture manufacturer, is acquired.
  • 1986: Former textile plant at Carysbrook in Fluvanna County, Va., is acquired to produce ready-to-assemble furniture.
  • 1987: Employs 3,800 in Thomasville, a city of 18,000.
  • 1988: Becomes first full-line furniture maker to launch a long-term multimillion-dollar television advertising campaign.
  • 1990: 205,000 sq. foot plant in High Point is bought from LADD furniture.
  • 1990: Thomasville and Pleasant Garden plants lay off 111.
  • 1990: Thomasville, Pleasant Garden, Winston-Salem and West Jefferson plants lay off 200.
  • 1991: Manufacturing plant in Hickory, employing 150 is bought.
  • 1992: Announces plant closing in southern Guilford, laying off 217.
  • 1995: Armstrong World Industries, Thomasville’s parent, agrees to sell Thomasville Furniture to St. Louis based Interco to create the nation’s largest residential furniture maker for $339 million.
  • 1996: Interco changes name to Furniture Brands International.
  • 1997: Brookneal, Va. plant is closed, laying off 320.
  • 1998: Fred Starr, Thomasville Furniture Industries president for 15 years retires.
  • 2000: Hickory Chair Co., Pearson and Hickory Business Furniture, previous units of Lane, become part of Thomasville Furniture Industries.
  • 2003: Winston-Salem plant shuts down, laying off 400. Thomasville Industries employs 5,400 in 25 plants in N.C. and Va.
  • 2003: Announces 200 job cuts from 13 plants.
  • 2004: Celebrates 100th anniversary.
  • October 2004: Opens 20,000-square-foot showroom in Jamestown, the third of five Thomasville stores planned for North Carolina.
  • March 2005: Announces 110 jobs cut, citing continuing shift in manufacturing overseas.
  • June 2005: Plant A closes. 600 jobs lost.
  • November 2005: Closes Plant 2, one of its largest plants and surrounding support facilities, laying off 588 workers.
  • May 2006: Announces the expected July closing of Plant D, eliminating 278 manufacturing jobs.
  • 2008: Thomasville plans to add more than 100 workers to a North Carolina plant and increase production by a third because of increased costs of doing business overseas. Thomasville's domestic workforce is 2,300. The company employs about 400 people at two upholstered furniture plants in Hickory.
  • 2012: Furniture Brands files for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
  • Nov. 2013: Heritage Home Group assumed control of Furniture Brands Inc, TFI's parent company.
  • Jan. 2014: Heritage Home Group President and CEO, Ira Glazer announces that the last of the former Thomasville Furniture Industries plants are closing. He said Thomasville Plant C and Plant C-Area 100 will shut down on March 21. The closure will mean the end of all operations and all employees at those locations will be discharged. A total of 84 people will be affected.




Source: News & Record archive, Thomasville Times
Compiled by Diane Lamb, News & Record Researcher

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