Whenever we walk through the county history section in the North Carolina Collection, one book always catches our eye. Most hardcover books used to be bound in cardboard which was then covered with cloth (many still are today, though more and more publishers go simply with the board covers). When it came time to bind Walter Whitaker’s Centennial History of Alamance County, 1849-1949, they probably didn’t have to think very hard about what kind of cloth to use.
Alamance Plaid, the cloth that made the county famous nationwide, is purported to have been the first plaid produced commercially in the Southern United States. We’re disappointed, however, that it never really caught on with bookbinders. Our libraries would be so much livelier if it had.