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This article is from the Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, 6 volumes, edited by William S. Powell. Copyright ©1979-1996 by the University of North Carolina Press. Used by permission of the publisher. For personal use and not for further distribution. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher.

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Hanes, Pleasant Huber, Sr.

by C. Sylvester Green, 1988; Revised December 2021

5 Mar. 1880–1 Sept. 1967

Pleasant Huber Hanes, Sr., was born in Salem, the son of Pleasant Henderson and Mary Lizora Fortune Hanes. His mother was a native of Texas; his father was a native North Carolinian, a direct descendant of Johan Philip Höhns, who immigrated from Germany in 1738 and settled in York, Pa. The name Höhns was early Anglicized to Hanes. Johan Philip Höhns's son, Marcus Hanes, and his wife, Anna Kerber, moved to North Carolina in 1774, when he acquired 1,060 acres in the Moravian settlement of Wachovia. There were ten children in that family, including Philip Hanes who with his wife Johanna Salome Frey had eleven children. One of these eleven children, Joseph Hanes, married three times and had six children. One of Joseph Hanes's sons with his first wife, Catherine Sehner, was Alexander Martin Hanes who married June March who had eleven children. One of Alexander and June's children was Pleasant Henderson Hanes, Pleasant Huber Hanes's father. 

After preparatory schooling in Salem, Huber Hanes entered Trinity College, Durham, in the fall of 1896. There he was manager of the baseball team and president of the Athletic Association; he was awarded a B.S. degree in 1900. He was also graduated with honors from the Eastman Business School, Poughkeepsie, N.Y., in 1901.

Returning home, Hanes joined his father and other members of the family in organizing the P. H. Hanes Knitting Company, which became one of the nation's largest manufacturers of knitted underwear. He was secretary and treasurer (1903) and vice-president and treasurer (1917). When his father died in 1925, Huber Hanes succeeded him as president and general manager, posts he filled with great success. On his retirement in 1954, he became honorary chairman of the board of directors. The top administrative positions were then assumed by his son, Pleasant Huber Hanes, Jr.

In addition to his own business interests, Hanes for many years was a director of the Wachovia Bank and Trust Company, the Security Life and Trust Company (later the Integon Corporation), West End Properties, Inc., and the Carolina Board of the Liberty Mutual Insurance Company. On occasion he served as chairman or president of those boards.

A loyal alumnus of Duke University, the successor of Trinity College, Hanes was chairman of its centennial fund-raising committee in 1939 and a longtime trustee. Two business honors of which he was proud were his membership in and onetime presidency of the associated Knit Underwear Manufacturers of America. He also held the position of director and regional vice-president of the National Association of Manufacturers. For two years (1927–29) he was a member of the State Salary and Wage Commission of North Carolina, a gubernatorial appointment. He was also a member of the North Carolina Citizens Association, the North Carolina Folklore Society, the Roanoke Island Historical Association, the Sons of the American Revolution, the Newcomen Society of England, the University Southern Club of New York, and the Merchants Club and the New York Club (both of New York City).

In Winston-Salem, Hanes was a member of the Centenary United Methodist Church, serving several times on its Board of Stewards; a charter member of the Winston-Salem Club of Rotary International; and a member of the Twin City Club, the Forsyth Country Club, Winston Lodge No. 167 of the Ancient Free and Accepted Masons (Knights Templar, Shriner), and the Wachovia Historical Society. He also joined the Sedgefield Country Club near Greensboro.

For nearly seventy years in Winston-Salem, Hanes was active in many civic, cultural, religious, and social service agencies. To all of them he gave liberally of his time, and to them and to many statewide causes he also gave generously of his money. A friend wrote of him, "Few civic or philanthropic movements in North-western North Carolina are activated without the enthusiastic support of Mr. Hanes."

On 27 Oct. 1909 he married Evelyn Hazen of Knoxville, Tenn.; they had two children, Rosalie (Mrs. Thomas O. Moors) and P. Huber Hanes, Jr. Hanes was buried in Salem Cemetery, Winston-Salem.

Additional information from NCpedia editors at the State Library of North Carolina: 

Pleasant Huber Hanes was a direct descendant of Johan Philip Höhns, a German Palatine who immigrated and settled in York, PA in 1738. The name Höhns, also spelled as Hoehns, Hohns, Hoens, Haines, Haynes, or Heintz was Anglicized to Hanes, and the name Hanes consistently used after the late eighteenth century. Johan Philip's son, Marcus Hanes, was just days shy of 19 when he immigrated with his father in 1738 aboard the Glasgow

Marcus Hanes and his wife Anna Elizabeth Kerber had ten children before moving to North Carolina in 1774. One of their children, Philip Hanes, married Johanna Salome Frey and had eleven children, including Joseph Hanes.

Joseph Hanes married three times and had a total of six children; two with his first wife, Catherine Sehner (various spellings) and then four with his third wife, Mary Snow. One of Joseph and Catherine's children, Alexander Martin Hanes, married Jane March and the two had eleven children, including Pleasant Henderson Hanes, the father of Pleasant Huber Hanes.  

People Named Hanes by Jo Linn White is a valuable resource for those interested in Hanes family genealogy. 

-- Alyssa Putt, N.C. Government & Heritage Library, August 2019


William S. Powell, ed., North Carolina Lives (1962).

Raleigh News and Observer, 1 Sept. 1967.

James R. Toung, Textile Leaders of the South (1963).

We, the People of North Carolina 14 (July 1956).

Who's Who in America (1954–55).

Who's Who in the South and Southwest (1956).

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