McKnight Construction Company Inc. was founded by father and son, Mason H. McKnight Sr. and Mason H. McKnight Jr.
Beginning in 1929, Mason McKnight Sr. built houses. Throughout the 1940’s and 1950’s, he operated under the name of M.H. McKnight doing small, private-sector projects.
Mason McKnight Jr. graduated from Georgia Institute of Technology in 1952 and then entered the United States Army as lieutenant. After serving in Korea, he came home in 1954 and joined his father in the construction business. The father-son team began building under the name M.H. McKnight & Son.
Over time, private-sector jobs gave way to all public-sector work, and in May of 1961, they changed the name to McKnight Construction Co. Inc, which seemed better-suited to the type of work now being done. Houses, service stations and other small projects were replaced by schools, hospitals and other local and state government projects. The company soon outgrew its 900 sq ft office building, so in 1973, it moved into a bigger and better 4,000 sq ft office at 635 N.W. Frontage Road in Augusta, Georgia.
The father and founder, M.H. McKnight Sr, remained active in the company until his death in 1973. Mason H. McKnight Jr. continued to head the company, and by now, it had grown to include federal projects. A third generation came into the business when Mason’s three sons, Mason H., III, William D. and George Locke McKnight graduated from college and decided to follow in their father and grandfather’s footsteps. The three sons became part of the company, and it continued to prosper. By the time of Mason H. McKnight Jr.’s death in July of 1994, he had seen revenues rise from $312,000 in 1962 to more than $30,000,000 annually. His sons, Mason and Will, continue to manage McKnight Construction Co, while the youngest, Locke, left to start his own construction business.
McKnight Construction Co. now employs between 100 and 150 people, depending on current work loads, and operates in the southeast with most of its work in Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina. Work is contracted from local, state and federal governments, and projects include schools, libraries and other institutional-type buildings, as well as a variety of jobs for the US Army Corp of Engineers.