1.   Historical note

2.   Scope and content

3.   Provenance

4.   Processing note

5.   Inventory

6.   Subjects

    List of finding aids

    R.I.H.S. Library page

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 Frank Wood Records

 Textile manufacturer, of Cumberland, R.I.

 Records, 1889-1926

 Size: 1 linear foot

 Catalog number: MSS 1057

 Processed by: Rick Stattler, August 2000

©Rhode Island Historical Society

Manuscripts Division


Historical note:

            Frank Wood (1865-1934) was the son of Manning Wood of Burrillville, R.I. He worked in the carding room at the A.L. Sayles mill as a young man, attended the Philadelphia Textile School, and then worked in several Rhode Island textile mills. In 1898, he founded the Frank Wood Manufacturing Company in the village of Valley Falls, Cumberland, R.I. The company was founded in partnership with Wood's father Manning Wood (1834-1919), with William Hinchliffe (husband of Manning's daughter Grace) joining the firm in 1900. After the death of Manning Wood, he was replaced by his daughter Phebe M. (Wood) Sayles as president. The company produced narrow woven fabrics, and in particular "fancy tapes for trimming children's clothing, night robes, wrappers, etc., all colors in cotton and silk." It remained active on Haven Street in Valley Falls until its failure in 1923.

            The Wood Fabric Company was founded by Frank Wood in 1924. The company was also based in Valley Falls, and did commission weaving. It was not a financial success, and closed in 1926.

            Frank Wood married Massachusetts native Alice Bullard. They had four children between 1903 and 1911: Wendell, Gertrude, Charles and Alice. Frank and Alice (Bullard) Wood are buried in Barrington, R.I.


1920 U.S. Census, Rhode Island district 102, page 13.

Cumberland directories

Hall, Joseph D. Jr. Biographical History of the Manufacturers and Business Men of Rhode Island, 175-16. Providence, R.I.: J.D. Hall, 1901.

Representative Men and Old Families of Rhode Island, III:1431-1432. Chicago: J.H. Beers, 1908.

Rhode Island Cemetery Database

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Scope and content:

            This collection consists of the complete correspondence file and other records of the Wood Fabric Company, 1924-1926; scattered records including payroll of Frank Wood Manufacturing Company, 1898-1924; and a few personal papers of Frank Wood, 1888-1920. among the most interesting folders is the patent suit regarding collar-making that the Frank Wood Manufacturing Company filed against the much larger Van Heusen Company in 1924. In general, the Wood Fabric Company correspondence files are of most interest in documenting the financial difficulties suffered by a short-lived company during an economic downturn.

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            These records were donated in 2000 by Charles Wood, son of Frank Wood.

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Processing note:

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Frank Wood Manufacturing Company

Box 1, folder 1. Correspondence, 1921

Box 1, folder 2. Inventory, 1915

Box 1, folder 3. Pattern cards, undated

Box 1, folder 4. Time books, 1898-1903 and 1903-1904 (lists names of workers)

Box 1, folder 5. Time books, 1904 and 1905 (lists names of workers)

Box 1, folder 6. Trial balance sheet, 1923

Box 1, folder 7. Van Heusen patent case, 1922-1924

Box 1, folder 8. Miscellaneous:

                        Paid bill, 1914

                        Accounts receivable summary, 1921-1922

                        Bills re final auction and dissolution, 1924-1926

Wood Fabric Company

Box 1, folder 9. Correspondence, 1924-1926, A-B

Box 1, folder 10. Correspondence, 1924-1926, C-D

Box 1, folder 11. Correspondence, 1924-1926, Decorative Fabric Co.

Box 2, folder 1. Correspondence, 1924-1926, E-F-G

Box 2, folder 2. Correspondence, 1924-1926, H-I-J-K-L

Box 2, folder 3. Correspondence, 1924-1926, M

Box 2, folder 4. Correspondence, 1924-1926, N-O-P

Box 2, folder 5. Correspondence, 1924-1926, R

Box 2, folder 6. Correspondence, 1924-1926, S-T-U

Box 2, folder 7. Correspondence, 1924-1926, W

Box 2, folder 8. Ledger cards, 1924-1926

Box 2, folder 9. Weave room book, 1925 (lists names of workers)

Frank Wood, personal

Box 2, folder 10. Account and memorandum book, 1888-1892

Box 2, folder 11. Miscellaneous:

                        Bills paid, 1889-1892 (tuition, taxes, medical)

                        Pay envelopes from F.L. Sayles & Co., April and May, 1890

                        Genealogical letter from T. Wood of New Orleans, 1915

                        Account with estate of Manning Wood, 1919-1920

                        Purchase contract for piano from M. Steinert & Sons, 1920

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Business failures - Rhode Island - Cumberland

Frank Wood Manufacturing Company

Patent suits - Rhode Island - Cumberland

Textile industry - Rhode Island - Cumberland

Van Heusen Company

Weaving - Rhode Island - Cumberland

Wood Fabric Company

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