How it was founded:
Carrington Luther Dews Sr. was born on November 23, 1891 in Alta Vista, Virginia. He left home at the young age of thirteen and moved to Lynchburg, Virginia where he took his first job at Lynchburg Pipe and Foundry Company. In 1914 he moved to Birmingham, Alabama and continued learning the skills of a foundry man at Hardy-Tines Foundry. In the mid 1930’s he moved his family to Hattiesburg where he went to work for Mr. A.B. Maynard at Hattiesburg Foundry, formally Enterprise Foundry. This foundry primarily supplied the timber industry of South Mississippi. By 1940, C. L. had purchased the foundry from A. B. Maynard and renamed it C.L. Dews & Sons Foundry.
At the conclusion of WWII, his two sons C. L. Jr. and Burns returned from naval service and joined in the business. The original foundry was destroyed by fire in the winter of 1945 and a new building was constructed at our current location on Edwards Street. One of C. L.’s two daughters, Evelyn Dews Boone, joined the business as the bookkeeper in 1955. From these founders, Dews Foundry currently is managed by five members of the third generation and five members of the fourth generation.
The product line for the foundry has continually evolved over our eight decades of existence. The original products of gray iron for the lumber industry have primarily been replaced by high chrome irons for the mining industry. The molding process has changed from green sand to chemically bonded sands. The melting process of gas fired cupola has been replaced by electric induction melting.
Steel Fabrications & Machining:
Steel fabrication was added in the mid 1950’s. The original products were for commercial buildings to include beams, columns and bar joist. The 1960’s saw the Eisenhower Interstate program and the steel fabrications moved toward highway construction fabrications such as bridge bearings. The machine shop was able to compliment both the foundry products and the highway fabrications.
A new foundry was completed in 1995 and continues to produce over five million pounds per year primarily for the mining industry. The steel fabrication and machine shop produce parts for commercial, industrial and highway use.