Story of Hooker Furniture Closure To Be Told

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Former Hooker Furniture Company employee Toni Jamieson on the last day of production at the Martinsville, VA plant.

Former Hooker Furniture Company employee Toni Jamieson on the last day of production at the Martinsville, VA plant.

“With These Hands: The Story of an American Furniture Factory,” will premier at 5 p.m. on Nov. 21. Focusing on the last weeks and days of production, the documentary tells the story of the Martinsville factory that closed in 2007 after 83 years in operation.

“‘With These Hands’ is an example of the top-quality documentary programming that people expect to see on Blue Ridge PBS,” said James Baum, station president and CEO. “The story of what happened to the Hooker Furniture plant has been repeated in many communities. This is also the story about the people who worked at the Martinsville factory, who lost their jobs to global competition.”

“With These Hands” follows the last load of kiln-dried wood down the assembly line as it is cut, honed, and assembled into fine furniture. Along the way, employees at the factory share their perspectives on work, community, and survival in a country devastated by deindustrialization and outsourcing. In spite of their misfortune, these people exhibit great pride in their work and a determination to carry on.

The documentary, produced by the “Unheard Voices Project” in Winston-Salem, N.C., shows the impact of globalization’s “race to the bottom” on skilled workers across America.

Visit www.BlueRidgePBS.org for more information about “With These Hands.”