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The Cotton Mill (Texas Cotton Mill Company)

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1910; 2010 renovated. 610 E. Elm St.

Located on the southeast edge of McKinney, this substantial complex of one- and two-story brick structures is a prominent reminder of the economic supremacy of cotton in the state’s principal agricultural region, the Blackland Prairie. Built adjacent to the rail line and constructed by a consortium of local business leaders, the plant was McKinney’s largest employer during its six decades of operation. By 1917, it was one of only 14 cotton mills in Texas and among the few west of the Mississippi River to produce colored-print cloth. The elongated mill building measures almost 500 feet in length and is marked by a relentless pattern of oversized 12-over-12-light windows, each capped by a segmental arch. The building’s two levels contained almost two acres of floor space for the 12,000 spindles and 370 looms that were in operation here, the largest denim manufacturer in the world. Since closing in 1969, the mill buildings have been repurposed as event spaces and offices. Immediately south of the mill complex, desolate streets and vacant lots indicate a demolished neighborhood of mill workers’ cottages.

Writing Credits

Gerald Moorhead et al.


What's Nearby


Gerald Moorhead et al., "The Cotton Mill (Texas Cotton Mill Company)", [McKinney, Texas], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Texas

Buildings of Texas: East, North Central, Panhandle and South Plains, and West, Gerald Moorhead and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2019, 119-120.

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