The History of Middlesex County 1635-1885
J. H. Beers & Co., 36 Vesey Street, New York
1884
Pages 435-441



TOWN OF MIDDLEFIELD..
BY P. M. AUGER



[transcribed by Janece Streig]

SETTLEMENT AND EARLY HISTORY.



The first settlement of Middlefield was not until some fifty years later than that of Middletown, or about 1700. The people of Middletown were undoubtedly familiar with her beautiful hills and valleys, her dense forests, her dashing waterfalls, and the abundant game and fish in her forests and streams. Yet the fertile fields of Middletown, her church, and schools, and society were such as to naturally prevent her sons from leaving their established homes at an early period.

About the year named (1700) Benjamin MILLER, with his wife and several small children, came from South Farms, Middletown, to settle in the wilds of Middlefield. He located on what might have been a partially open field, in the extreme south part of the town, not more than 100 rods from where is now its south line, and perhaps 50 rods south of the residence of the late Hiram MILLER on South street.

The same year Samuel ALLEN came from Middletown to a beautiful site in the extreme north of the town, and built a house known later as the Deacon Giles MILLER place. As Benjamin MILLER's place reached the south line of the town, so ALLEN's reached its north line. Though four miles from his former neighbors, he could undoubtedly see their houses, and they could see his. During the same year, Samuel; WETMORE located in Middlefield, near the center, opposite where the Methodist church now stands, on Main street. Though these three men were within what is now the town of Middlefield, they were in no sense neighbors, for ALLEN was two miles north of WETMORE, and MILLER one and a half miles south, with an unbridged river between, and no roads to connect with either.

Soon, however, the families of HUBBARD, WARD, BACON, STOW, and TURNER came from Middletown; LYMAN, COE, and CAMP from Durham; BIRDSEY from Stratford; and BARTLETT from Guilford. So the people in this section gradually increased in numbers, until, in 1744, in October, the parish of Middlefield was incorporated as a separate ecclesiastical society:

"Beginning at the southwest corner of said Middletown bounds and running eastward on the south line of said town to the southeast corner of TALCOT's farm, and from thence north on the east line of said farm to the northeast of said farm, from thence northwesterly to a cart bridge standing on the west river, from thence to the stoney hill to a place called the Stone-Horse-Block, from thence westward to the northeast corner of the lot originally laid out to Richard HALL, and continued still westward on the north line of said lot to the west line of said town and from thence to the first-mentioned corner."

It appears that the people of Middlefield, from the outset, were independent thinkers, each man having a will and strong convictions of his own, which is a striking characteristic of their descendants. At the time the ecclesiastical society was incorporated the following were the chief citizens: Samuel ALLEN sen., Samuel ALLEN jr., Ephraim and Obadiah ALLYN, Thomas ALVORD, Nathaniel and Joseph BACON, John BARTLETT, John BIRDSEY, John BROWN, Abraham and Edward CAMP, John CHILSON, John CHILSON jr., Joseph, David and Robert COE, Gideon and Thomas COOK, John and Isaac DOUD, Daniel BRIGGS, Jeremiah GOULD, Ebenezer and Joseph HALE, Eliakim HALE, Samuel STOW, Hawley and Ebenezer HUBBARD, Jeremiah LEAMING, Benjamin MILLER sen., Ichabod, Amos and David MILLER, Moses PARSONS, John, Rockwell and Daniel STOW, David STRICKLAND, David STRICKLAND jr., Stephen TURNER sen., Samuel WARNER, Samuel WETMORE sen., Benjamin WETMORE, Benjamin WETMORE jr., Beriah, Joseph Thomas, Daniel, Caleb and Prosper WETMORE, Josiah WETMORE jr., and Titus John WETMORE. The sum total of the taxable list of these persons were more than 3,000 at that time.

These people were farmers, and as a rule, thrifty farmers, and it is a matter of note that in laying out their roads and farm line the roads, as nearly as possible, ran straight and parallel, so that there are three principal streets running north and south, and five original roads east and west. The fields, as a rule, are rectangular and of course the lines parallel. This is strikingly the case even to this day.

Little is known of the religious and moral character of the people previous to 1744. Of course, their connection was with Middletown, and although a few miles from public worship there is no doubt many of them were attentive to it. It is told of Governor Benjamin MILLER (as he was called) that at one time in this period, he lost of a number of pigs strangely, so he watched one Sunday, gun in hand, to learn the source of the mischief, and after a while a bear came along in search of a pig. Mr. MILLER shot the bear, and saved the pigs; but he was arrested, taken before a magistrate in Durham, and fined for this profanation of the Sabbath.

The women in those times were generally strong and vigorous, and ready, effective workers. An old lady, years ago, told the story of her wedding day. She rose early in the morning, washed, made a cheese, then dressed and rose on a pillion behind her intended husband, six miles to Middletown, where the marriage ceremony was performed. They remounted, went to their new home, and at once entered upon the arrangement of their residence. This couple lived to see the third generation of their descendants (great-grandchildren) sit at their table on festive occasions.

INCORPORATION OF THE TOWN, ETC.



Middlefield continued to be a portion of the town of Middletown until 1866, when, by an act of the Legislature, it was set off from the latter town and became a town by itself.

The plan of settlement between the two towns was as follows: The war and municipal indebtedness of Middletown was to be divided in proportion to the grand lists of the two towns the year of division. Middlefield was to take one-tenth of all the indebtedness and was entitled to one-tenth of the public property of Middletown. Of the paupers those only who were traceable to the territory of Middlefield were to be provided for by the new town. In this way Middlefield escaped to the great extent the great extent the great pauper expense of Middletown, for as pauperism is largely the result of the liquor traffic and as no alcohol is sold in Middlefield the pauper expenses are light. Since the organization of the town the municipal and war debts have been paid, and a sinking fund for paying the railroad indebtedness is being raised by setting aside each year two mills on each dollar of the assessed value of taxable property, so that in 1887, when a considerable portion of the guaranteed bounds mature, they will be taken up in part and the balance funded at a low rate of interest. This will place the town in good financial condition and enable the tax rates to be made comparatively low.

CIVIL LIST.



The town has always been ably represented in the State Legislature. The representatives have been: Moses W. TERRILL, 1867, 1883; Benjamin W. COE, 1868; Phineas M. AUGUR, 1869; Henry SMITH, 1870; P. W. BENNETT, 1871; Alvin B. COE, 1872; A. M. BAILEY, 1873; James T. INGLIS, 1874; Harvey MILLER, 1875; John L. WILBUR, 1876; Willis E. TERRILL, 1877, 1878; Edwin P. AUGUR, 1879; Daniel H. BIRDSEY, 1880; John O. COACH, 1881; A. B. COE, 1882; Peter W. BENNETT, 1884.

ROADS.



Since the incorporation of the town three new roads have been made, while the layout of several of the old roads has been so changed as to entirely change the lines of travel in their respective localities. The mountain road, the only outlet of the town on the west, by a change in the layout and by a considerable expenditure of money and labor, has been so improved on both the west and east sides that the ascent and descent have become very easy, and there is more travel over this road than over any other common road leading into New Haven county.

POST OFFICES.



There are two post offices in Middlefield, one at the center and one at Rockfall. When the former was established a new post route was also established, and the stage which connected Durham with Middletown passed through Middlefield. This continued to be the post route until the Air Line Railroad was completed, and since that time the mail has been brought by rail. The Rockfall office is in the northeastern part of the town, and since its establishment the business of the town has greatly increased.

THE CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH.
BY REV. A. C. DENISON.



According to information from various sources it appears that while the Congregational church, as an organized body, was not in active operation for a term of years, still meetings for public worship were held as stated from time to time, and probably at no time did the fire of Christian love wholly go out. Probably the support of the church by a tax upon property, collectable by law, did more to disorganize the congregation than almost any other one thing, especially in those times of disagreement upon matters of doctrine, when the conflict at the time ran high. The date of organization of the first church in Middlefield is uncertain, as the first leaves of its records are missing, and the remainder somewhat mutilated, apparently my mice or insects.

The society was incorporated by the Legislature in October 1744, and the church was probably organized about that time.

The earliest existing entry on the society records reads thus:
"Att a meeting of the Inhabitanc of the Society of Middlefeaild Held By adjourment from the 20 Day of December 1744 to the fourth Day of February 1745; att: the same meeting the Society Did By their Major vote Impower the Committee, viz.: John BARTLIT Benjamin MILLER, and Joseph COE to go to the old Society's Committee and Receve the money that is Due to our Society and give Recepts of what thy Receve.

"att the Same meeting the Society Did By a major vote signify their Desire that mr. Jonathan LYMAN Preach with us Six Sabbaths more from this time. "Voted that Mr. CHANCY or any one of the Ministers * * * may preach in s'd Society in Exchange with Mr. LYMAN * * * myte preach & Lectur Amongst us att Sum * * * * ." (The stars indicate places that are missing.)

At the next meeting held February 25th 1745.
"The Society Did by their major vote, wherein two-thirds or more of the Inhabitants Qualified as the Law Directs and present Declar it Nesary to Buld a Meeting House for Divine Worhsip.

"Att the same meeting the Society Did by their Major Vote make choise and impower Jabez HAMLIN Esq'r to make application as soon as may Be to the Hon'ble the Gen'le assembly to appoint order and affix the place where the meeting house should be Erected."

John BARTLIT and Benjamin MILLER were appointed to represent the society before the committee that the General Assembly should appoint. In May, the society voted to go forward and build a meeting house "according to the proportion of timber already got." Joseph MILLER, Benjamin MILLER, and Samuel WARNER were appointed a building committee. A tax of two shillings on the pound of "Ratable Estate" was voted.

The first meeting house, built in 1745, was 40 feet square. After hearing several candidates the church called Rev. Ebenezer Gould, who was ordained as its first pastor, October 10th 1747. After a service of years he was dismissed, in 1756. Nine years then elapsed before another pastor was settled, when Rev. Joseph DENISON was ordained in February 1765. He died in February 1770, greatly beloved and lamented. He was born in Windham, in 1738, and graduated from Yale College in 1763. A vote in 1768 to give him sixpence on the pound on all the ratable estates in the society, on condition that he "give bonds to spend his days with us, and never be dismissed from the pastoral care of this church and congregation," shows the estimation in which he was held. In fact, he seems to be the only minister who ever died in the service of this church. The society, at a meeting held soon after his death, voted to "pay for the mourning apparel that was got at his funeral, and the white gloves and the nails for the Cofen and the Cofen and digging the grave-5:15:9d, also voted to allow salary to the widow to the end of the year." Calls were extended to Revs. Benjamin DUNNING, Joseph M. WHITE, and Chandler ROBBINS, before Mr. DENNISON was settled, but not accepted.

After his death, Rev. Daniel BOWER was called, but declined. Rev. Abner BENEDICT, of North Salem, New York, a graduate of Yale in 1769, accepted a call, and was ordained November 20th 1771. He was voted a settlement of 200, with a salary of 50, to be increased to 80 after two years. He is said to have been a scholarly and able preacher and pastor. By his personal address and influence, his is said to have secured the freedom of all the slaves held by his people. He was dismissed in 1785, to go to New Lebanon, New York, that an invalid daughter might enjoy the benefit of the medicinal waters of that place, where he preached six years. He died at Roxbury, New York, in 1818.

After his departure, religion seems to have been at a low ebb.

The records of the church and the society abruptly end in 1773, and are not resumed till 1808. Whether there was little of a religious nature to record, or whether the record has been lost, does not appear. From 1785 to 1820, there seems to have been no minister laboring permanently here. Sometimes they would secure a preacher for a few weeks or months; sometimes neighboring pastors would hold a service here; then again, for months together, no public services were held on the Sabbath. The church appears to have become almost extinct.

In 1808, appeared the dawn of a brighter day. The influence of a revival in Durham was felt here. A new church was formed, and 29 persons united with it, but for 12 years they were without a regular pastor. As the church had not control of the meeting house, they often met for worship, like the early Christians, from house to house. Feeling the need of a house of worship, in 1819 "the church and subscribers" built the Conference House, "for the use of the Congregational church in Middlefield, and at their disposal forever."

The next year, May 24th 1820, Rev. Stephen HAYES, on Newark, New Jersey, was installed as pastor, with the understanding that he should devote one third of his time to this parish, and two thirds to that of Westfield. He was dismissed June 6th 1827. After an interval of two years he was succeeded by Rev. James NOYES, of Wallingford, a graduate of Union College in 1821. He was installed sole pastor of this church July 23d 1829, and so continued till his dismission in January 1839. He was afterward settled in Burlington, but spent the evening of his life in Haddam, where he died. He was followed by Rev. Dwight M. SEWARD for two or three years, and Rev. James T. DICKINSON for a somewhat shorter time. Rev. James D. MOORE, of Wiltshire, England, was installed as pastor December 30th 1846, and dismissed April 18th 1850 to accept a call to Clinton.

In 1851 the church was served by Rev. A. V. H. POWELL; in 1852 and 1853 by Rev. William JONES; in 1854-56 by Rev. Francis DYER; in 1857 by Rev. Prof. LINDSAY. In June 1858 Rev. Spofford Dodge JEWETT became pastor, and so continued for more than nine years, to August 1867, when Rev. Theodore S. POND was ordained. After a year of service he left to go as a missionary to Syria, and was succeeded by Rev. Andrew S. DENISON who remains to this time as action pastor.

The deacons of the church have been: Ichabod MILLER, elected--, died 1788, aged 87; Joseph COE, elected--, died 1781, aged 71; Giles MILLER, elected 1774, died 1804, aged 77; Prosper AUGUR, elected 1809, died 1836, aged 81; William LYMAN, elected 1838, died 1869, aged 85; Horace SKINNER, elected 1838, died 1848, aged 56; Phineas M. AUGUR, elected 1850; Ward B. BAILEY, elected 1870, dismissed 1874; Rev. J. D. JEWETT, elected 1785.

The average age of the first five deacons was over 80. In 1881 the church edifice was enlarged by an addition of fifteen feet in the rear, and was improved. The present membership of the church is about 140.

THE METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH.
BY REV. JOSEPH SMITH.



The Methodist Episcopal church in this place had a small beginning, and its members were accustomed to meet in school houses and private dwellings. They gradually increased in number till at length they formed part of a circuit and were visited by the circuit preachers. Being so near the Middletown University the presidents, professors, and students frequently filled their pulpit. The first Methodist church was a brick building, and was erected about 1829. As they gradually gained strength and numbers they were able to sustain a preacher alone. In the course of years the brick church was found too small, and to meet their enlarged wants, in the year 1866, the centennial of Methodism, they celebrated that interesting event by erecting their present building. It is the largest, best appointed, and handsomest church in town, and a credit to the liberal men who built it. It has an excellent lecture room, and teachers' room, and it is in every way convenient. They also have a very roomy and pleasant parsonage, with ample grounds, and they are out of debt. There is a membership of about 100, and 90 children in the Sabbath school. The present pastor is Rev. Joseph SMITH who is closing this third and last ministerial year here. The prospects of the church are bright and encouraging.

ST. PAUL'S CHURCH, MIDDLEFIELD.



As Middlefield was originally a part of the town of Middletown, so also were the Episcopalians of that section members of Christ church in the city. Among the early settlers of this portion of the town, was Beriah WETMORE, a brother of Rev. James, who was evidently one of "the brethren" in whom the reverend gentleman had succeeded in creating "a liking for the church." In proof of this, we find that a person resident there was as early as 1767 appointed "to collect the rates" in that vicinity for the support of the parish (a customary way at that time for all denominations to support their ministry). This was continued for some years; and it will be remembered that Dr. GOODWIN stated, the first time the marriage ceremony was performed in Christ Church was to unite Mr. Timothy HIERLEHY and Miss WETMORE, of "Middlefield," and one of the zealous men also alluded to in this sermon as "undaunted by difficulties in the erection of the first edifice, was of 'Middlefield.'"

By deaths and removals, these family names are now extinct in this section. Not so their influences. From that time, there have been those who came to the city, to attend the services here, till after the Berkeley Divinity School was removed to the city, when lay readers were furnished to them from that school. One of these, Rev. J. Surges PEARCE, is credited for active and preserving work in procuring the erection of St. Paul's church in 1862.

The mother church, and especially the "Ladies' Missionary Society," contributed liberally to the funds required, and it was paid for and consecrated within two years. The local papers gave an interesting account of the consecration services, in which the Rev. Drs. DESHON, of Meriden, H. DEKOVEN, and F. J. GOODWIN, of this city, took part, the sermon being from the Rt. Rev. J. WILLIAMS, the consecrator. This is still a mission, dependent upon the city for lay readers and clergy. The report of the warden to the convention of 1884 gives 20 families and 28 communicants.

UNION CHAPEL, ROCKFALL.



This is the school building put up in 1832, when the Rockfall district was set off from the East District in 1856, and the new school house was built. This, through the influence of Peter W. BENNETT and others, was moved a little east, and located on land of estate of Thomas ATKINS. It has this year been moved to the opposite side of the road where it will doubtless remain permanently. It has been and it is used for a union Sunday school, which was organized in July 1877, and is still prospering; also for Sunday evening religious services.

MILITARY.



Middlefield, with other places, had her company of militia which had its annual drill in autumn. Many of our leading men in the last generation held the office of colonel or captain.

In the war of the Revolution several prominent men were in the army. Among whom were Elihu STOWE, Deacon Giles MILLER, Deacon Prosper AUGUR, Sylvanus NICHOLS; also several of the salves of Middlefield enlisted and went to fight the battles of the Revolution. All who went had their freedom on their return.

Among those who were in the war of 1812 were Linus COE, son of Col. Elisha COE, and Asa KIMBALL, both deceased. The names of the volunteers from what is now Middlefield, who served in the war of the Rebellion are included in the Middletown list. (See page 50.)

SCHOOLS.



The early inhabitants of Middlefield, like their friends in Middletown, were intelligent, and highly estimated the value of education; hence they soon established schools, and evinced strong interest in them. It is probably that their first school were neighborhood schools, and that they continued so for many years. The first school records of Middlefield commence with its organization as a school society, and the first school after its organization was established in 1745. Measures had been taken that year to build a church, and as in many other instances in New England, the school was established at about the same time.

On November 18th 1745, at a school meeting duly called, "it was voted to have a school three months in winter and three months in summer. And Amos MILLER was chosen School Committee." At a meeting held one week later "it was voted to lay a Tax of a penny on the pound for school purposes, which would be at the rate of about 4 1/6 mills on the dollar, and would be regarded as a heavy tax even at this time, when money is more abundant. In 1746, the tax was increased to 1 pence on the pound, equal to 6 1/3 mills on the dollar.

In 1748, 1749, 1750, the society voted a rate of four pence on the pound for school charges, which is about equal to the present rate for all town, county, and State purposes. A portion of this may have been, and probably was, to pay for building a school house, for in 1747 a vote was passed that a school house should be built on a knoll south of the meeting house. In 1756, it was "voted to keep a four months school in the school house by a school master and 6 months in summer in the four parts of the society by school dames." The schools kept by these dames were probably in private houses.

In 1760, it was "voted to build a school house 14 by 16 ft. beside the chimney on a knoll south of the old school house, beside Benjamin MILLER's fence." In 1799, or earlier, the society was divided into three districts, with boundaries thug defined:

"First or South, beginning where the west river intersects the line of Durham, thence following said river northerly as against the meeting house thence west to the meeting house thence west to and south of Dr. Jehiel HOADLEY's to Wallingford line, thence by Wallingford & Durham to the place of beginning.

'Second or East District The Easterly line of the South District so as to include the road and all families living thereon to Widow Abigail BIRDSEY's (about 20 ft back of Lewis MILLER's present residence) thence North to Westfield.

"Third, North included all North and West of the above Districts."

In 1832, after a sharp struggle, the paper mill quarter (Rockfall) was set off from the East District, of which it was a part, and since has been a separate district. Since that time there have been no material changes, except to adjust the district lines, and make them more definite; hence, at the present time there are four districts in town; the South, East, North, and Rockfall.

About 1854, there was a general movement throughout Middlefield to improve the schools, with the result that new, convenient, commodious, well ventilated school houses were built in all the districts, with the best modern improvements.

During the present year, 1884, an effort has been made to establish a high school in town. The project failed by a small majority against it, but it will probably be accomplished in the near future.

A glimpse of the old time school-master may not be out of place. He was usually a stalwart man, often a tiller of the soil, and generally a man of pluck, who could wield the rod when necessary. His forte was to command he expected his charge to obey. He must withal be a man of art. Often in a school of 60 pupils, 40 would write, hence 40 goose quills were to be made into pens, and mended once, twice, or thrice every day. "Please mend my pen, sir," was a cry continually falling on the ear of the pedagogue during the half house devoted to the pen. The examination of the master by board, included a specimen of writing by a pen he was required to make at the time, and the requirements in this respect were not small; indeed, they were often very exacting; hence the master must have a keen pen-knife, and be an expert in its use. He must also be a sober man, though there were sometimes exceptions to this. On one occasion a master n school, having imbibed too freely, fell asleep in his chair, and some sharp tricks were played on him, while so humiliated, but this was an exception, and as a rule those old masters were men of mark.

The school dames too were women of high character, and their teaching was an important element in forming the standard of their generation.

MILLS AND MANUFACTORIES.



Commencing at the first mill privilege on the West River, as we ascend it, we find the old paper mill privilege. Here, in 1793, Jehoshaphat STARR and Nehemiah HUBBARD started the business of paper making, and continued for some 30 years, when larger firms, elsewhere, with greatly improved machinery, caused the paper business at this place to be abandoned. Then, for a time, TIDGEWELL Brothers made squares and bevels. Afterward, in 1868, G. W. MILLER, and P. W. BENNETT started a bone and saw mill. In 1875, BENNETT bought out MILLER and he hold the property at the present time, although the line of manufacture has changed from time to time.

Powder Mill.-This, the second privilege, was occupied about 1793 for powder making, by Vine STARR, and this business has continued most of the time since, being now in the possession of the RAND family, of Middletown. It is quite remarkable that during more than 90 years of powder making only one life has been lost by explosion. The business is still flourishing.

Third Privilege.-In 1798, Jehoshaphat STOWE erected a factory for cutting nails. The machinery used was invented by Daniel FRENCH, of Berlin Connecticut, and it is believed to be the first instance of nail cutting my machinery in this country. In 1812, and during the war with Great Britain, wire was manufactured at this place; afterward, for some years, it was used for wool carding; then for a while it laid idle.

In 1845, the property was purchased, and a new factory built for making pistols. Henry ASTON, J. N. JOHNSON, J. NEITH, S. BAILEY, Nelson ASTON, and Peter H. ASHTON took a large contract from the government. In 1852, the property was sold to I. N. JOHNSON. The building burned down in September 1879. In 1881, Mr. Otis SMITH purchased and rebuilt, putting up a larger building, where he manufactures SMITH's revolver (his own invention) and other articles in the hardware line.

Middlefield Falls.-This is one of the largest and finest waterfalls in Connecticut.

West River here falls 35 feet, and when the stream is full the roar is heard for several miles.

In the early history of Middlefield this great power was partly utilized to run a grist mill, which was built by William MILLER, and which continued to be used down to about 1800. A saw mill took its place about that time, and remained for more than 50 years. In the meantime a cotton factory was built near the place, using water from the falls. This continued in successful operation until 1874, when it was burned, with all the machinery. The Russell Manufacturing Company, of which Henry G. HUBBARD, of Middletown, is a leading member, erected on the spot a building, 200 by 38 feet, with a wing. The main building is five stories in the rear. The mill is used especially for spinning, and turns out a large amount of work.

In 1779, during the Revolutionary war, a small mill was erected near the falls, using some of the power there for manufacturing snuff. The enterprise was not very successful, and soon ceased.

The Russell Company is the upper privilege on the West or Coginchaug River.

The first privilege ascending Beseck River is that of Isaac CORNWELL who has a carriage and turning shop.

At the second, the Farmers' Milling Company built a grist mill about 1845. Mr. David LYMAN initiated the enterprise, which after running a few years, proved a complete and disastrous failure, involving a total loss of all that was invested in it; after changing ownership once or twice the mill burned in 1868. The property is now owned by Isaac CORNWELL, and is a desirable water privilege.

The next privilege is where Elihu STOW had a grist mill, about 1780, and for many years thereafter. Later it was owned by Deacon Horace SKINNER, and was used for wood-turning; still later it was owned by Roswell LEE, and was used for a saw mill and a feed mill, and it is now owned by the widow Roswell LEE. It is a good privilege.

The fourth privilege is the bone and super-phosphate mill of G. W. Miller, a good and successful enterprise.

The next privilege, the fifth on Beseck River, is that of the old grist mill and saw mill, and later used by Andrew COE in grinding bone and in the manufacture of bone charcoal for sugar refiners. Here now are part of the works of the Metropolitan Washing Machine Company.

The next, or sixth privilege, is the one where the old distillery was located. This was established in the early part of the present century, and was, as such things always are, a curse to the parish, and no small share of the troubles of the people were traceable to this fountain of blackness. In connection with this dismal old building was a wool carding mill where Capt. Alfred BAILEY turned out wool rolls for the housewives of Middlefield. Here now are the principal building of the wringer works of the Metropolitan Washing Machine Company.

The next, or seventh and upper privilege in town, was occupied in 1849 for the first in the manufacture of buttons. Prominent among the button makers were MILLER, COE & BENNETT. Sine the discontinuance of this industry the establishment has been used by William LYMAN in making his bow-facing oars, which for effectiveness, convenience, and novelty have attracted much attention. Later, this privilege has also been used and is now in possession of the Metropolitan Washing Machine Company in making clothes wringers; so that three consecutive water powers and a powerful steam engine are now propelling their works, which have a capacity equal to the making of 400 clothes wringers per day. They make wringers, washing machines and mangle machines, and this is supposed to be the largest establishment of the kind in the world. From 125 to 160 hands are employed. The company was organized in 1860 and has been increasing in capital and extending its business from time to time since until the Universal Clothes Wringer has a world-wide reputation. The incorporators were: David LYMAN, M. W. TERRILL, and William LYMAN. The first officers were: M. W. TERRILL, president; David LYMAN, secretary and treasurer. The present officers are: R. C. BROWNING, president; Lyman A. MILLS, secretary; M. W. TERRILL, treasurer.

The general office and sales room is located at 32 Cortland street, New York city.

PROMINENT MEN.



DAVID LYMAN.
P. M. AUGUR.

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