Frank Hardy Made My Photographs Two

Chemstrand Plant in Pensacola Florida 1950’s …

with 15 comments

Chemstrand Plant_RTP_20 Mar 13 SFW

Above is a view of the plant at night back in the 1950’s.  Chemstrand was at one time the largest manufacturer of synthetic fiber ( Rayon was one ) that was used in carpets, rugs and anything else that needed synthetic fiber.  All of the fiber was loaded onto spindles and shipped to their respected buyers, Mohawk Carpets would have been an example.  At one time back in the 1950’s through the 1970’s, I would guess that Chemstrand was in the top five of employees in Escambia County Florida.  Even though they had photography department, we were hired for miscellaneous jobs at the plant.  Below is the same photo run through the Lucis Art Filter.

Chemstrand Plant_RTP_20 Mar 13 _ Lucis  SFW

Some of the detail in the highlight areas are retained better than in the photo at the top.  I do not know anything about this photo … the area of the plant this photo shows, etc.  I enjoy looking at these types of commercial images and I have found a handful of these types of images in my last find

Written by Frank Hardy

March 20, 2013 at 6:45 pm

15 Responses

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  1. My father, Joe Nims, worked at Chemstrand many years. He was an electrical engineer. Probably from 1960-1974. I remember going to annual family employee
    parties as a child.


    Jeannie Stahlecker

    April 1, 2021 at 11:40 am

    • Thanks for the comment and Happy Easter …..


      Frank Hardy

      April 4, 2021 at 12:25 pm

  2. My Dad worked for Daniels Construction as a welder way back then and helped build the building. When it was finished we moved back to South Carolina. I was so young I have no memories of the actual plant itself, but heard many stories about the construction of it.

    S. Bell


  3. My Dad was in marketing and sales for Chemstrand from about 54 to 60. Made lots of trips from NY to Pensacola. Thanks for the great pics!


    Joe Carvin

    February 24, 2018 at 3:12 pm

    • Thanks for commenting. I know of no details of the image. I just thought it was an interesting night time shot and did not take me a lot of Photoshop work to clean the image up. Wish I knew more. Please check back, I do not post as often as I should now days, but I go in spurts and post. Thanks … Frank


      Frank Hardy

      April 3, 2018 at 6:24 pm

  4. My dad (Louis Ray Sr) was instrumental in the construction of the plant and was head of the Intermediates area for many years. He was in Pensacola from 1951 to 1969 when he was transferred up north. I always remember the plant as being like a family with a huge Christmas party, recreation pavilion and an 18 hole golf course.


    Bob Ray (@tpabob46)

    September 19, 2014 at 7:19 am

    • There are some photos in this blog of a Lois Ann Ray … any relation? Thanks … Frank


      Frank Hardy

      September 19, 2014 at 2:39 pm

  5. Frank – It’s Chemstrand not Chemistrand :) I worked at Chemstrand from 1961-1967. I’m really enjoying all the memories these pictures are bringing back.


    Wayne Craig

    March 23, 2013 at 1:04 pm

    • Wayne … Thanks for the correction. I have edited this post with the change to Chemstrand through out. I remember this now that you mention it. I do not know where on the plant grounds that this photograph was taken or what part of the processing plant this is. If you have any insight about any of this, please let us know. Thanks for commenting and please check back … Frank


      Frank Hardy

      March 24, 2013 at 9:30 am

      • This is what we called the Intermediates Area. It’s where all the chemicals such as ammonia, cyclohexane, nitric acid, etc were processed to make the raw nylon flake. I worked as a chemical lab tech that did the analysis on all the different chemical compounds used in the process. There was some pretty nasty stuff that was emitted into the atmosphere at times. Sometimes, when the atmospheric conditions were right clouds of nitrous oxide that would drift down and mix with any fog in the air to produce nitric acid and ruin the paint on cars in the Intermediates parking lot. It the damage was bad enough, the company would pay for a new paint job if you turned in a damage report.


        Wayne Craig

        March 26, 2013 at 3:05 pm

      • Thanks for the comment … Frank


        Frank Hardy

        March 29, 2013 at 10:25 am

  6. I love ALL the photo’s you post! Keep them coming!!!


    Ray Mercer

    March 20, 2013 at 7:57 pm

    • Thanks … It is nice to know that people appreciate these images. Please check back … Frank


      Frank Hardy

      March 20, 2013 at 8:29 pm

      • Hi Frank,

        Jeff Scheumack here….Was trying to give you a call and update on a few things….can you email me your phone number….


        jeff scheumack

        April 17, 2013 at 9:22 am

      • Jeff … My cell phone number is 850-449-1279. I tried to send it to you on my iPhone, but I could not tell if it was sent or not. I know that this way you will receive it. Anytime is fine, leave a message with your number if I am busy and I will get right back with you. Looking forward to hearing from you … Frank


        Frank Hardy

        April 17, 2013 at 9:47 am

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