Bookmark and Share

Printer-friendly versionPDF version
Average: 3.4 (5 votes)

Drexel Furniture Company

by Wiley J. Williams, 2006Drexel Furniture Company, rebuilt two weeks after 1906 fire. Image courtesy of Burke County Public Library.

The Drexel Furniture Company was incorporated on 10 Nov. 1903 and began making fine furniture in a small factory near Morganton in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. In time, the company acquired other furniture plants, including the Table Rock Furniture Company in 1951 and the Heritage Furniture Company and Morganton Furniture Company in 1956. On 1 Dec. 1960 Drexel Furniture became Drexel Enterprises, Inc., and the following year it acquired the Southern Desk Company, manufacturer of a broad line of institutional furniture and equipment for laboratories, libraries, classrooms, dormitories, and churches.

In 1968 U.S. Plywood-Champion Papers bought Drexel Enterprises. As a subsidiary of Champion, the company became Drexel Heritage Furnishings, Inc. Champion sold Drexel Heritage to Dominick International Corporation, a private New York brokerage and investment banking firm, in August 1977. In 1986 Drexel Heritage became a wholly owned subsidiary of Masco Corporation, which, by buying several other leading North Carolina furniture makers, became by the late 1980s the largest U.S. furniture manufacturer.

Drexel for many years sold home and institutional furniture both domestically and abroad. Many of the best-known hotels in the world purchased Drexel furniture, and contracts with the U.S. State Department and the General Services Administration placed Drexel furniture in American embassies and government offices all over the world. In 2004 Drexel Heritage Furniture Industries, Inc., as part of Furniture Brands International, was based in High Point and had 1,300 employees working at several facilities in North Carolina. It remained one of the nation's leading residential furniture manufacturers, producing a variety of wooden and upholstered furniture under several brand names.

References:

Allen C. Irvine, Sixty Years of Progress in the Making of Fine Furniture: Drexel Enterprises, Inc., 1903-1963 [1963?].

Edward W. Phifer, Burke: The History of a North Carolina County, 1777-1920 (1977).

Additional Resources:

Drexel Heritage Furniture Industries, Inc.: http://www.drexelheritage.com/

Image Credit:

Drexel Furniture Company, rebuilt two weeks after 1906 fire. Image courtesy of Burke County Public Library. Available from http://pictureburke.bcpls.org/places_3.htm (accessed July 3, 2012).

 

Origin - location: 

Comments

Comment: 

I was married in 1966, and we purchased a Drexel dining room set - oval junior table, two side chairs, four chairs and a breakfront. I am giving the set to a grandniece and need a ball park figure for income tax purposes. Can you help me? It is beautiful, and my family and friends have sat around it dozens and dozens of times. Thank you.

Comment: 

Hi Eva,

Thanks for visiting NCpedia and taking a minute to post your comment and question.

Unfortunately, NCpedia is an online encyclopedia and we don't have any information to help with appraisal questions.  You may want to consider contacting an antiques dealer.

Good luck!

Kelly Agan, NC Government & Heritage Library

Comment: 

Looking for a photo of the New Travis Court tall chest. My granddaughter inherited this from her fraternal grandmother and the piece is missing the top pulls. Would like to see if similar ones can be purchased.

Comment: 

Hi Diane,

Thanks for visiting NCpedia.

Unfortunately, we do not have any information about specific Drexel products.  You may want to try a search of the web and look for images.

And here is the link to Drexel's web page.  You should be able to find consumer and company contact information -- http://www.drexelheritage.com/.

I hope this information helps.

Good luck!

Kelly Agan, NC Government & Heritage Library

Comment: 

Can anybody help me with aging and maybe even a ballpark value on a wellington park by drexel credenza with a hutch on it?
It was given to me for free and i am in the process of refinishing the piece... I cant find the exact piece anywhere online but im 100% it is wellington park series. Just larger than any pictures ive seen.
Any input will be appreciated.

Comment: 

Some years ago we bought a Secretary (#582=966) in a fruit wood finish from Drexel. I realize recently that the handle on one of the drawer pulls broke. Is there any way this might be replaced? I have a drawing of the drawer pull I could give to someone if I know where to send it.
I would appreciate any information or correspondence from you on this matter.
Thanks
.

Comment: 

Dear Carolyn,

Thank you for visiting NCpedia and taking time to post your question.

Unfortunately, NCpedia doesn't have any information to help with product questions.  You may want to contact Drexel with your question.  Here is the link to the Drexel Heritage home page -- http://www.drexelheritage.com/. If you scroll down to the bottom of the home page, you will see "Customer Care" on the right with several links depending upon your question.

I hope this information helps and good luck!

Kelly Agan, Government & Heritage Library

Comment: 

I purchased a beautiful dining room set with 8 chairs, sideboard and a china cabinet with bowed glass door... The back of china cabinet has the marking of New Travis Court Collection no. 317-3 by Drexel . Can you give more information!!!!

Comment: 

I have an Accolade Bedroom set with a king size headboard. The handles for the two storage compartment have broken, can the be replaced?

Comment: 

Hello,

Thanks for posting your question to NCpedia. I would recommend contacting the manufacturer. If it was Drexel, you may wish to contact Furniture Brands International, which Drexel is now a part: http://www.furniturebrands.com/. If they are unable to assist you, perhaps a used furniture dealer or a carpenter near you can assist.

Good luck!

Michelle Underhill, Digital Information Management Program, NC Government & Heritage Library.

 

Pages

Add a comment

PLEASE NOTE: NCpedia will not publish personal contact information in comments, questions, or responses. Complete guidelines are available at http://ncpedia.org/comments.

Copyright notice

This article is from the Encyclopedia of North Carolina edited by William S. Powell. Copyright © 2006 by the University of North Carolina Press. Used by permission of the publisher. For personal use and not for further distribution. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher.

Grey Squirrel - Click me to return to the top of the page