Industry In North Carolina
Lincolnton (N.C.) Laboratory
North Carolina has become home to a significant segment of today's pharmaceutical industry. But the origins of the pharmaceuticals in the state dates back to the Civil War.
Two medical laboratories were established by the Confederacy to produce a wide range of medical drugs during the conflict.
The pharmaceutical industry in North Carolina got its start when the Confederacy needed to find sources for medical supplies. Of seven medical laboratories that were created during the Civil War, two were in North Carolina and another was located in South Carolina.
The following is excerpts from a letter written near the end of the conflict.
"CONFEDERATE STATES OF AMERICA,
RICHMOND, VIRGINIA, February 9th, 1865.
Sir-In reply to the circular of the 7th instant, from your office, I have the honor to submit the following report: ...
Foreseeing the many and great difficulties to be encountered in procuring medical supplies from foreign countries through the blockade, attention was given at an early day to the establishment of medical laboratories, and the manufacture of medicines at Lincolnton, North Carolina, Charlotte, North Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina, Macon and Atlanta, Georgia, and Mobile and Montgomery, Alabama. While these laboratories have been engaged more especially in the manufacture of medicines, heretofore universally procured from abroad, great attention has been given to the manufacture of indigenous remedies, which are now administered by medical officers, in lieu of medicines of foreign origin, with favorable results."
The Confederate Surgeon General Samuel Preston Moore hired Dr. Aaron Snowden Piggot (1822 - Feb. 13, 1869) in 1862 to establish a medical laboratory to manufacture medicines for Confederate troops. Piggot was appointed on July 19, 1862 as Superintendent of Laboratories at Richmond's medical purveying department. The new laboratory was suggested to be placed in Charlotte, North Carolina.