RANDOLPH COUNTY, NC  — It can be tough to reinvent yourself, especially for a small North Carolina community. But Franklinville is working to do just that.

Mac Whatley is the president of the Randolph Heritage Conservancy and has spent several stints as Franklinville’s mayor. As he walks around the spot near the Deep River – the water the locals harnessed all those years ago to power the mills – he remembers where things stood.