November 1, 2005
Chenot Associates has been selected to draw up the architectural plans for the work on the Little Red Shop.
The Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor recently promoted a program called Footsteps in
History, in which historical sites in the valley were encouraged to open during the Columbus Day weekend.
We opened the Little Red Shop on each of the three days, and, because of the publicity for the event, we had
more people from outside of Hopedale than any other time in the past. We had visitors from Uxbridge,
Milford, Grafton, Westboro, Millbury, Upton, Douglas and Weymouth. One couple made a $20 donation to the
Red Shop fund.
Tom McGovern has done a great job of putting together a DVD of the My Kind of Town show. In addition to
the show itself, it includes scenes from around town, pictures from the pizza party and the trip to New York.
Tom had hoped to make the DVD available to an organization in town that could have sold it as a fundraiser,
but due to restrictions from ABC this couldn’t be done. Our thanks go to Tom, not only for the work he did
putting the DVD together, but also for suggesting a donation to the Red Shop fund. Here’s a message from
Tom about it.
The DVD for My Kind Of Town is ready and I have 20 available! They are $10 to cover my costs and if you
would like to donate more please do so to the Little Red Shop.. We will accept donations to give to him.
Otherwise, you can pick up the DVD and if you donated pictures they too will be available. It took me over
170 man-hours to create it and it was fun doing it. I must admit that I am tired of looking at Johnny Vaughn
though...... I hope you enjoy it!!
You can pick them up in my computer shop, which is open 9-5:30 M-F, Thursday's till 8 and Saturday from 9-
1. Please pay by cash or check made out to me for $10. There is no sales tax since you are reimbursing
me for my cost to create one for you.
A Dell Approved Reseller
Thanks go to Christine Packard of Hope Street for her donation of two very old items from the Grafton &
Upton Railroad. One was a book of check stubs and the other was a book containing financial records.
Thanks also to Sara Sartori of South Main Street (and of the library) for the donation of a table loom. It looks
like new and we expect to put it to good use when the shop reopens.
Thanks to Phil Roberts, formerly of Bancroft Park, now of Maryland, for a 1966 newspaper article titled “Adin
Ballou’s Magnificent Failure.”
The latest demolition victims in Hopedale were the Hopedale Coal & Ice building and the barn at the former
Henry farm on Dutcher Street.
In his History of Milford, published in 1881, Adin Ballou wrote of industry in the little village on the west side
of town, Hopedale. Here’s what he had to say.
We come finally to the manufacture of cotton and woolen machinery at Hopedale. This bright and beautiful
village is situated a mile and a half westerly from the town center on Mill River, toward the frontier of Mendon.
In its whole length and breadth it must have nearly one hundred dwelling-houses and six hundred
inhabitants. It was founded in 1842 by the Hopedale Community, grew thriftily till that Community
relinquished its unitary arrangements in 1856, and still more thriftily from that time to the present. From the
beginning, its leading people have distinguished themselves more and more by mechanical genius and
manufacturing enterprise. Here are four strong firms operating, besides their minor subsidiaries, - all more
or less connected in their pecuniary interests and co-operating in their industrial results. These firms are:
(1) George Draper & Sons, whose special province includes a host of valuable improvements in cotton and
woolen machinery, such as temples, Sawyer spindles, Draper’s filling spinner, double spinning-rings,
steps and bolsters, patent motions for looms, Thompson oil-cans, shuttle guides, etc. (2) The Hopedale
Machine Company, manufacturers of improvements in cotton machinery, special machinists’ tools, patent
warpers, spoolers with patent steps and bolsters, etc.; George Draper, president; William F. Draper,
Treasurer; Joseph B. Bancroft, superintendent. (3) Dutcher Temple Company, sole manufacturer of Dutcher’
s patent temples, Kayser’s patent temples, Murkland’s carpet temples, etc.; George Draper, president; F.J.
Dutcher, treasurer and secretary; W.W. Dutcher, agent. (4) The Hopedale Furnace Company, whose
business is to manufacturer and furnish to order iron castings of all descriptions.
The Hopedale Machine Company occupies the most northerly of the water-privileges, and has a principal
shop 220 feet in length by 66 feet in width, and three stories in height. Its machinery is driven by a motor-
force derived from a Leffel turbine wheel, and when scarcity of water requires it, by a steam-engine of 50
horse-power. The next privilege below is occupied by the Dutcher Temple Co. and its adjuncts, with ample
buildings, water and steam power, and many ingenious contrivances (some of them wonderfully
constructed) to facilitate the operations. The foundry, with all its appurtenances, stands closely adjacent on
the west side of the canal, and the ring-shop only a few feet south of the temple-shop. Nearly a mile further
south is another valuable privilege, with a capacious shop chiefly devoted to the elaboration of the famous
Sawyer spindle, owned by Dea. A.A. Westcott, and managed in connection with the interests of Geo. Draper
& Sons. The dams, ponds, canals, anti-fire apparatus, offices, supplementary shops, outbuildings, and
manifold conveniences up and down the river, can be appreciated only by judicious observers.
A vast majority of the cotton-mills in the United States, and many woolen-mills, have adopted these
Hopedale improvements to a greater of less extent; and their proprietors are reaping therefrom a rich
harvest of profits. Foremost among them are the temples, Sawyer spindle, the Rabbeth spindle, and the
adjustable spinning-rings, - three notable patents. The temples are in universal use in the United States,
Mexico, South America, and to a considerable extent in Europe. Leading manufacturers have demonstrated
to their satisfaction that the spindle yields an enormous saving in power, labor, cost, etc. The number of
these spindles already introduced and in use is over 1,200,000. The rings, too, have proved a great
success. The number of these furnished and in satisfactory use exceeds 1,500,000. But the multitude of
less conspicuous articles sent forth from these Hopedale laboratories are distributed far and wide over the
country, and roll up a formidable aggregate of mechanical production, usefulness, and wealth. In good
times all these establishments together employ nearly 350 hands, meet a monthly payroll of $12,000, and
make aggregate sales to the amount of more than $500,000 per annum. The different kinds of machines
and appliances manufactured here, with and without patent securities, must number at least 100. Since the
foregoing was penned, these Hopedale manufacturers have vastly increased with improvements made by
new inventions, large structures erected, and a continual expansion of operations. Adin Ballou, History of
Milford, pp. 365 – 367.
Note that there’s no mention of looms. Up until the sale of its first Northrop loom in 1894, the companies in
Hopedale made parts for spinning machinery and parts for looms, but not complete looms. The introduction
of the Northrop resulted in a dramatic growth of the Draper Company through the 1890s and early twentieth
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