MEDIA
Handwritten page of the charter of the Piedmont Industrial and Land Improvement Company
Credit: Scot French, photographer
Original Author: W. L. Brown, James H. Ferguson, Alexander Truatt, Schuyler Saunders, J.W. Sellers, Robert Kelser, Stephen B. Logan, W.C. Gibbons, Burkley Bullock
Created: April 9, 1889; 2021 photograph
Medium: Handwritten legal document

Detail from the Charter of the Piedmont Industrial and Land Improvement Company

This is a detail from the opening page of the charter for the Piedmont Industrial and Land Improvement Company, a joint stock company established by Black entrepreneurs from Charlottesville and Albemarle County. Item number two in the document states the purpose of the newly established financial corporation: "To engage in manufacturing operations, to purchase, hold, lease, rent, improve, sell, exchange, develop, and otherwise deal in real estate." In addition the charter states that it intends to receive money on deposit and advance it as a means "to extend aid and assistance, financial or otherwise, to persons of limited means in purchasing homes" and to extend similar aid to those engaged in manufacturing or other businesses. The charter further asserts that it will carry on all activities normally associated with land and improvement companies except for the "construction of a turnpike beyond the limits of Albemarle County, Virginia, or of a railroad or canal, or to establish a bank of circulation." This document was filed at the courthouse in Charlottesville and witnessed by the following nine founders of the Piedmont Industrial and Land Improvement Company—W. L. Brown, James H. Ferguson, Alexander Truatt, Schuyler Saunders, J.W. Sellers, Robert Kelser, Stephen B. Logan, W. C. Gibbons, and Burkley Bullock.

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