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> Gallery 17 - Mills

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Company box top Willimantic spool cotton -- a company box top printed in Willimantic in 1900
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Windham Manufacturing CompanyThe Windham Manufacturing Company's Willimantic mills are seen here in 1907. This Company was organized in 1824, and became one of America's largest producers of "duck cloth" used extensively in sailing ship sails. The mills closed for cotton cloth production in 1928, but were home for several industries until their demolition in 1974.
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Windham Manufacturing CompanyThe Windham Manufacturing Company's mills were located on Bridge Street. The buildings were later occupied by the Quidnick-Windham Company, a silk manufacturing company, and after World War Two by the Electromotive Company.
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Natchaug Silk Mill The Natchaug Silk Mill on North Street was built in 1881/1882 by Frederick Dwight Chaffee. The factory was later taken over by the Windham Silk Company and Brand Rex. It was demolished circa 1970, and today is the site of the courthouse.
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Morrison Machine Company & Natchaug Silk CompanyThe Morrison Machine Company's factory is the wooden structure, and was located on Valley Street.
The Natchaug Silk Company's mills, built in 1888, stood on North Street. The Morrisons manufactured silk spinning machinery, and the Natchaug Company was famous for its high quality dress silk. The former company's mills were taken over by the Windham Silk Company in 1910. The latter company went into liquidation in 1895, due to a financial scandal. The Brand Company later used their mills in the 1950s.
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Smithville Manufacturing CompanyThe Smithville Manufacturing Company's cotton mills stood on the eastern side of Bridge Street. The company was well known for its high quality duck cloth, a hardwearing cotton cloth that was used in sailing ship sails, and in sailors' uniforms. Cotton cloth had been weaved on this site since the early 1820s. The mills were demolished in 1940. The view on the right is taken from atop a Main Street business block and shows the company's dam and its stone worker housing in the bottom right hand corner.
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Turner Silk MillThe Turner Silk Mill, stood on the western corner of Bank St.and Valley St. It was built in 1888. The company went into liquidation in 1917, and was later used by the Willimantic Trade School. It was demolished in 1970.
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Smithville Manufacturing CompanyAnother view of the Smithville Manufacturing Company
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Quidnick-Windham Mfg. Co. smokestackThis was the smokestack of the Quidnick-Windham Manufacturing Company on Bridge Street. It was on the southwest corner of their ā€œLā€ shaped building. In the 1940s, the buildings were bought and used by Electro-Motive.
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Chaffee Silk MillThe Chaffee Silk Mill, pictured on the corner of Church and Valley in a building erected in 1872. J. Dwight Chaffee manufactured high quality silk thread and silk fishing lines from this site, well into the 20th century. This building was also fell victim to early 1970s city redevelopment, and today is the site of the Windham Courthouse.
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Holland Silk CompanyThe Holland Silk Company's mills manufactured high quality silk thread in Willimantic from 1864 until 1937, the year the company located to Pennsylvania. The Holland brothers came from neighboring Mansfield, one of the first towns in the United States to manufacture silk thread.
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Asa and Seth Jillson's 1826 cotton mill Asa and Seth Jillson's 1826 cotton mill can be seen in this 1916 photograph. It stood almost opposite to the entrance to Jackson Street. The entrance to the Thread City Crossing is located several feet to the west of where this historic mill was located.
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Conantville Silk Mill Mansfield's Conantville Silk Mill was built just before the Civil War. It was taken over by Max Pollack in the early 20th century to manufacture cotton thread. The old mill building is perhaps known to locals as the Shaboo Club, which burnt down in the late 1970s. The Eastbrook Shopping Mall stands on the site today
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