Jefferson Cotton Gin (Location Key)


Cotton gins play a crucial role in the economy of Yoknapatawpha. A 'gin' is machine that separates the valuable fibers of the cotton plant from its seeds; a cotton gin also usually includes a 'cotton compress' which presses the cleaned cotton fibers into bales for shipment. Since a gin is only used once each year, when the cotton is picked, it is typically housed in a simple structure. Though Faulkner never describes the operation of one in any detail, his fictions mention several different gins around the county. This "cotton gin" on the outskirts of Jefferson appears the same way in "Skirmish at Sartoris" and The Unvanquished: as the place where the freedmen are gathered, "under guard," ahead of the election (204). The Town mentions that this same "gin and compress" - or perhaps another - is located near the Blue Goose Cafe, a Negro juke joint (167).

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Jefferson Cotton Gin
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Jefferson Cotton Gin