Mythology in the Neighborhood
One look at the 1859 map in the area around 24th and Hamilton Streets shows a multitude of small cotton and woolen mills. One of these was started in 1858 by William Wood, the son of Thomas Wood, who owned an iron works at Wood Street between 21st and 22nd Streets. Thomas Wood specialized in looms and other machines used in the textile industry. William expanded to a larger mill at 24th and Hamilton, called Mount Vernon Mill in 1860. This was a three-story factory measuring 100 feet on all sides. In 1867 further growth compelled him to build six buildings on the four acres between 21st and 22nd Streets between Hamilton and Spring Garden Streets. 700 employees turned Southern cotton and Western wool into clothing sold directly to retailers.