When the brothers started their company in 1914, hardly any roads in Georgia were paved beyond town limits. County roads consisted of clay, dirt, or shell, and most were maintained by convict crews from the state prison.
Goodloe and Earle made sales calls to county commissioners to sell hardware, picks, shovels, prison uniforms, and wagons for transporting prisoners out to job sites. Every week the brothers traveled by rail across the state, and even into Florida, South Carolina, and Alabama, visiting county officials. At the end of the week, they returned to the office in Atlanta and placed their orders.
In addition to hand tools, the Yancey brothers also became one of the first dealers in the United States for J. D. Adams and Company, a manufacturer of mule-drawn road graders. The Adams grader was a predecessor of today’s motor grader and a powerful tool for upgrading roads that had been little better than rutted wagon trails.
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Foundations 1914 - 1938