henry talmadge link
Henry Talmadge Link (b.1889 d.1983) had been a banker in Lexington, N.C., and New York before he organized Dixie Furniture Company in 1936 with 90 employees. In 1940, after visits to automobile factories in Detroit, he equipped Dixie Furniture Company with motorized conveyors. This introduced the industry to mass production, which changed the way furniture assembly lines moved the product through the plant.
His first introduction was a five-piece mahogany suite which, with a few minor changes and additions, was still in the product line as late as 1986. One million pieces had been manufactured by 1960.
A man of great business acumen, he early associated himself with his nephew, J. Smith Young, and son-in-law, E. Bruce Hinkle. Link-Taylor, a model factory, was built in 1949-50. Young-Hinkle started in 1962, Dixie-Linwood was built in 1972, and Wicker by Henry Link began in 1984.
For nearly half a century, Mr. Link was the man at the helm, and Dixie grew and spread to become the largest manufacturer of bedroom furniture in the world. A man of vision, Henry Link accompanied then governor of North Carolina, Luther Hodges, to Europe in the 1950s in search of business for the furniture industry.
"We have had many fine men in the industrial life of Lexington, N.C., but we have not produced any greater than Henry T. Link. His business achievements, moral influence, philanthropy, and community leadership make his life a hallmark of success." (L.A. Martin, News Historian) He was inducted into the American Furniture Hall of Fame in 1998.