Southern Matters

Southern Matters

James King (Nashville, Georgia)

Mr. King lives between Nashville and Alapaha within 100 yards or so of his birthplace. Although the cane venture is associated with him, he is, unfortunately, disabled and the work falls to his wife and daughter. They have a self-serve (honor system) cane-juice stand, sell juice on an occasional basis in an Albany market, and make syrup. Because preferences differ, they sell some syrup as a blend with corn syrup and some as pure syrup. Like all the syrup produced in Berrien County, their syrup is of excellent quality.


Slides 1 and 2 are two views of a mechanized two-roller mill. This mill is a QFM #14 (or identical) that was made in Quitman Georgia. The mill is driven by a tractor pto, which is connected to a right-angle converter. Note the vertical shaft that is connected by a chain to the vertical shaft of the mill. A friend of theirs, the same person who motorized my Southern Plow No.5, did the machine work in the Chula/Brookfield area. Slide 3 is an action shot of the mill. Anyone who might doubt the juice output of a vertical 2-roller mill should see this one squeezing cane! Mr. King’s daughter, who is all business, is in the background.


Slides 4 and 5 are different views of a Golden horse mill that is driven with a conventional sweep.


Slide 6 shows their furnace what it was under construction. Note the kettle support and the brickwork. A mason laid the first course, but Mrs. King did the other masonry. Slides 7 and 8 show the wide lip that Mrs. King put around the kettle (which has just been filled with juice) and dampeners that are installed in the flue. This is an uncommon arrangement, but probably contributes to flame control and efficiency.