As director of information for the Marion-based Virginia Farm Bureau Federation, Copenhaver advanced strategies for developing southwestern Virginia’s agricultural economy. She emphasized the importance of cooperative marketing of farm products in order to improve the standard of living for farm families.
Copenhaver practiced such cooperative strategies herself by coordinating the production of textiles out of her home, Rosemont. She hired women to produce coverlets based on traditional patterns and using local wool. Rosemont Industries expanded its offerings to include a wide variety of rugs, bed canopies and fringes, and other household items, some woven, knitted, or crocheted by hand and others manufactured by machine. Rosemont's popular textiles attracted customers from throughout the United States and from Asia, Europe, and South America.
After Copenhaver’s death, her sister Minerva May Scherer, longtime dean of Marion College, headed Rosemont Industries for two decades. In 1960 some of Copenhaver's children incorporated the business as Laura Copenhaver Industries, Inc., which continues to manufacture traditional textiles.
Reprinted with permission of the Library of Virginia.