And the beginnings of that wall are already in downtown Pickens.
The city is currently planning to paint the now-white block wall at the back of Legacy Square a sand color in time for the Azalea Festival, but a steering committee hopes that wall will soon be covered by a brick façade – one made from bricks from the old Pickens Mill that has been torn down.
Although the details have not been finalized, the idea is to create a “mill memorial,” for the many mills of Pickens County, said Preston Bruce, who is heading up the history and culture subcommittee for the city’s planning steering committee.
Bruce said it was a project that could be done now with little cost involved.
George Case of Case Interior Designs said he knows the person who owns the bricks and hopes to be able get some for use on the project.
“Because of the history of the textile mills, I thought it would generate a lot of interest,” Case said.
And Wayne Kelley of the Pickens County Historical Society hopes his group can put on permanent loan the Williman Milliken/Hagood fountain,currently at the Hagood-Mauldin House, to put in the center of the display.
Kelley said the wall could be an ongoing attraction for pedestrian tourism in town, and Bruce said the wall is uniquely suited for the project because of the buttresses already built into it.
Kelley later told The Sentinel that while there may not be room to fully showcase all the mills that ever operated in the county, the group hopes to at least display a list on the wall that will include them all.
When the steering committee and planning commission met Monday night, they also discussed the possibility of either moving the statue of Gen. Andrew Pickens from behind the courthouse to a prominent site visible coming into town, or to build a second statue for that purpose.
Kelley said he would like to see a statue put in a 3 -to 4-foot island dead in the center of S.C. 8, and he said there are two turning lane areas that may be possible locations.
He said the Historical Society thinks it’s important to have a highly visible statue of the American Revolutionary War hero for whom both the town and county are named.
“Residents know we’re named after a Revolutionary War hero, but visitors don’t,” he said. “And who better to welcome people to Pickens than Andrew Pickens himself?”
Case, who is heading up the landscaping and beautification subcommittee, told the group that he had a friend that moved to Pickens recently walk around town and report her observations – about the positives and negatives – and to make suggestions.
He shared some of those thoughts with the committee to consider as it continues its efforts for planning improvements and ways to
attract businesses and tourism to town.
Case also suggested having a contest to come up with a marketing theme for Pickens and threw out several ideas based on the idea that Main Street Pickens has the highest elevation of any main street in South Carolina.
He also mentioned the ideas of getting Pickens High School history students involved in a project to put historical plaques on the buildings in town.
Donald Collins headed up discussions about recreation and leisure, and a number of ideas were batted around about walking trails, runs, and bike races, as well as a possible city camp ground and other recreational opportunities.
Chamber director Michael Parrott also discussed marketing and business development ideas. He and Scott Bork of Dunburks in Easley presented brochure mock ups that could promote each of the four in areas in which the committee is concentrating.
The committee meets the last Monday of each month at 5:30 p.m. at city hall, and the public is encouraged to attend and participate.