|The Western Electric Company- Tar heel Army Missile Plant meets National Register of Historic Places Criterion A for industry and Criterion C for architecture. The complex's primary local significance stems from its use for military-related manufacturing, product development, and testing. In February 1942, as part of a national campaign to repurpose underutilized industrial plants during World War II, the Defense Plant Corporation acquired three tracts encompassing 211.26 acres from Washington National Insurance Company. The Hagerstown, Maryland-based Fairchild Engine and Airplane Corporation immediately leased the complex and used it to manufacture twin-engine, laminated-plywood airplanes for the war effort from May 1943 through September 1944. The following month, Fairchild's Duramold Division became the Burlington plant's sole occupant. In December, Firestone Rubber announced that it would utilize the facility to manufacture ordinance for the United States Army. Firestone vacated the complex after World War II's end in August 1945.