History of Elmville, Connecticut

A space of about two miles intervenes between Elliottville Mill and the next mill on the stream below. This is Sayles’ Hill at Elmville. This is a brick and stone mill of four floors. in size about 40 by 100 feet. It is owned by the Sabin L. Sayles Company, of Dayville, as a branch of their more extensive works at that place.

About one-fourth of a mile below the latter is the Hopkins Mill. This is sometimes called the Exeter Mill. It is owned by Mr. T. E. Hopkins, and is employed in the manufacture of fancy cassimeres. It is furnished with five sets of cards, twenty-four broad looms, 1,680 spindles, and also has a dye house. Besides the water wheel it is provided with two steam boilers for emergency. The factory is a wooden building, about 150 by 40 feet and three stories high.

The Elmville Mills of C. D. & C. S. Chase, which occupy a site about one-fourth of a mile below the last, were started a long time ago. They were owned by Alfred Potter. About twelve years ago the mill was burned, it being a wooden building. A brick mill was then erected, 175 by 50 feet, having three floors. The present company have had possession of the mill since January 1st, 1886. The mill is furnished with four sets of cards and twenty-five broad looms. It has also a dye house. Fancy cassimeres are made. About 80 hands are employed and 150,000 yards annually produced.

The Attawaugan Manufacturing Company have three mills located on Five Mile river, in the northern part of the town of Killingly. Railroad connection is made at Dayville, about two miles below. It was organized in 1859. Mr. H. B. Norton, of Norwich, is president; L. Blackstone, of Norwich, secretary and treasurer, and W. L. Blackstone of the same city, agent. The superintendents are Calvin H. Frisbie and Chancy C. Chace. The company employ in these three mills about five hundred hands. running eight hundred and four looms and thirty-six thousand spindles. The products are fancy dress goods, sheetings, shirtings and cambrics. The president is about eighty years of age, and in possession of remarkable physical and mental vigor and business tact. The treasurer is about seventy-five years of age, and has traveled extensively. The corporation adopts a liberal policy toward its employes.

In the year 1859, Reverend L. B. Bates, as preacher in charge of the West Thompson M. E. church, formed a Methodist class at Ballouville, and appointed Mr. Elisha Baker leader. The class at one time numbered forty-two members. During the summer of 1870 the Attawaugan Manufacturing Company built a commodious and attractive church edifice, and gave the use of the same to the people of Attawaugan, Ballouville, and the surrounding community for religious purposes. Notwithstanding the fact that the company were members of the Congregational church, Norwich, no denominational preferences were urged. The voice of the people was to decide what order of preaching should be adopted. In the autumn of 1870 this house of divine worship was dedicated with appropriate and impressive services. The dedicatory sermon was preached by Reverend Mr. Meriman, pastor of Second Congregational church, Norwich. The pastors of the evangelical churches in this and in the adjoining villages were present, and assisted in the exercises. Reverend Shadrach Leader represented the DT. E. church, being stationed at the time at Danielsonville. The following January a Sunday school was organized, and Mr. Joseph Wheaton, a member of the Baptist church, Putnam, was elected superintendent.

In April, 1871, by request of the people, a preacher was sent by the Providence M. E. Conference, in the person of Reverend Nelson Goodrich. An— attempt to organize a Union church proved unsatisfactory, and in March, 1872, the people decided to organize a Methodist Episcopal church in due form, and this decision was immediately carried into execution. The ten members composing it were John Aspinwall, Louisa J. Aspinwall, Elisha Baker, Mary Baker, Amanda A. Baker, Amy A. Baker, John 0. Fisher, L. W. S. Fisher, Sarah Whidden and Laura Edwards.

Pastors to this church, beginning with April of each year have been as follows: Reverend W. W. Ellis, 1872-5; J. 0. Dodge, 1875; C. Morse, 1876; C. Hammond, 1877; D. J. Griffin, 187S; R. D. Dyson, 1879; D. L. Brown, 1880; W. A. Luce, 1881; S. Sprowls, 1882; E. J. Ayres, 1883; 0. A. Farley, 1884-6; William Kirkby, 1886; G. W. Wright, 18877-S; H. H. Moller, 1889. The membership of the church now numbers about one hundred. A Parish Association was formed in 1887, with Chancy C. Chace, president; Mrs. Almond Bosworth and Mrs. Thomas Holt, vice-presidents; and Calvin H. Frisbie, secretary and treasurer. The church building is not in the hands of trustees, but all the property associated with the church, including the church edifice,

Blackstone Hall and a parsonage, are owned by the Attawaugan Manufacturing Company.

Source: History of Windham County, Connecticut, Bayles, Richard M.; New York: W.W. Preston, 1889

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