508 S Thornton Avenue House History

                                           
                                        The Historic H. L. Smith House

Our firm operates in the historic H. L. Smith house, located in the Murray Hill residential area of Dalton.  Although the H. L. Smith house in now a modern professional office, we have devoted time and effort to making the property “homey” in keeping with the modified Georgian architecture of its period.  We have select interior colors, art, and furniture which are architecturally compatible. 

H. L. Smith built the home and construction lasted from 1908 to 1911.  The house is built on a foundation of solid rock.

In 1892, Mr. Smith was the first graduate of the “School of Technology of the University of Georgia in Atlanta,” which is now known as Georgia Tech.  We are thankful to the Alumni Office of Georgia Tech for providing us a replica of his diploma, which is located on the lower stair landing, together with a photograph of an automobile owned by Mr. Smith.  This car, an Oldsmobile, was the first car owned by a resident of Whitfield County, and was equipped with a “seatbelt” - a leather horse strap restraining the children in a rear-facing back seat.  Undoubtedly, Mr. Smith drove this car around Dalton with his daughter Lula (late Lula Westcott) enjoying the ride in the back.

The Smith and Westcott families are an integral part of the history of Dalton and Whitfield County.  The Westcott family manufactured duck cloth for he United States during the Spanish-American War, World War I, and World War II, and also for the use in circus tents and revival meetings.  The Westcott family later founded Cabin Craft, which was the predecessor of Shaw Industries.

After H. L. Smith sold the home, the home was used in the 1930s as a “tourist home” on Peacock Alley.  Later, it was used as a hospitality center for the carpet industry.  In the 1990s, Lula Westcott (by then over 90 years old) assisted us in locating our firm in this historic house.  We are grateful to Lula Westcott for her assistance, and to the Smith and Westcott families for their enduring impact on Dalton and northwest Georgia.

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