Chelsea House founder Alvin Cain dies at 82
Furniture Today Staff -- Furniture Today, May 31, 2012
GASTONIA, N.C. — Alvin Grier Cain, founder of furniture and accessories source Chelsea House, has died at age 82.
Cain worked briefly in the banking industry before joining his father-in-law's construction business, Spencer Lumber Co., where he designed, built and remodeled homes in the Gastonia area. While at Spencer, Cain founded his first company, Cain Collection, which sold period cabinet and door hardware. He later co-founded the store Luxury Crafts in Gastonia.
In 1973, Cain bought the New York-based art firm The Orleans Co., which served as the forerunner to Chelsea House, which is known for its sophisticated and stylish furniture designs. Cain was CEO of the company until 2009.
He held leadership positions in several local organizations including the Chamber of Commerce, the Jaycees and Civitan Club, among others. In 1982, he received the Distinguished Service Award as Gastonia's Man of the Year.
He is survived by his wife, Ann, a daughter and her husband, a son and his wife, five grandchildren and one great-granddaughter.
Memorial contributions can be made to The Alvin Cain Scholarship Fund, Limestone College, 1115 College Drive, Gaffney, S.C. 29340; First ARP Church, 317 S. Chester Street, Gastonia, N.C. 28052; and Covenant Village Benevolence Fund, 1351 Robinwood Rd., Gastonia, N.C. 28054.