Hopedale History Chronology

    of  the loom is that it includes the first self-acting loom temple. This device, which
    keeps the  cloth stretched as it is woven in the loom, becomes the basis for the
    Draper business in Hopedale.

    1817 - George Draper born in Weston, Mass.
                Hannah Thwing Draper born in Uxbridge, Mass.

    1821, October 3 - Joseph Bancroft born in Uxbridge, Mass.

    1824, June 26 - Sylvia Willard Thwing Bancroft born in Uxbridge, Mass.

    1830 - The first advertisement for Draper products is printed in the first issue of the
    Boston Evening Transcript. The business is owned by James Draper.

    1837 - Ebenezer Draper buys the Draper business, including the patent rights to the
    temple, and soon after, moves it from Wayland to Uxbridge.

    1839 - 1841 - Meetings and discussions take place, generally in Mendon, leading to the
    formation of Fraternal Community, No. 1, eventually known as the Hopedale Community.

    1840, April 1 - First issue of Ballou's twice-monthly newspaper, the Practical Christian,
    published in Mendon.

    1841, August 26 - Hopedale named. "Resolved, (1) That our said location, formerly
    called 'the Dale,' afterwards 'the Jones' farm,' and latterly  'the Hastings Daniels' place,'
    be hereafter called, known, and distinguished by the name of Hope Dale," Adin Ballou,
    The History of the Hopedale Community, pp. 54 - 55.

    1841, June - September - The Community announced in September that it had
    contracted to buy the Jones Farm along the Mill River in Milford. The contract had been
    signed on June 30.

    1841, October - First family moves into the Old House in Hopedale.  The Henry Lillie
    family become the first of the Community members to move to the settlement.  On the
    28th of the month Mrs. Lillie gives birth to the first baby born in the Community. She was
    named Lucy Ballou Lillie in honor of Mrs. Ballou.

    1842, January to April - More families move to the Old House in Hopedale, totaling 28
    persons by April 1. Work begins on a mechanic shop and a dam.  Many businesses are
    carried on, including, most successfully, the production of the Draper temple.

    1843 - "Near [Freedom Street] sat the two factory buildings, one of which was already
    outfitted with a waterwheel to operate a trip-hammer and lathe. It was this building,
    completed in 1843, that was known as the 'mechanic shop (possibly the building later
    known as the Little Red Shop) and that first housed the Drapers' enterprise as well as
    other small businesses and also served for a time as a school." Model Company Town,
    John S. Garner, pp. 129 - 130.

    1844 - A building is constructed on what later becomes Hopedale Street, between
    Chapel and Freedom streets, to serve as a chapel and school for the Community.

    1845 - Hopedale Village Cemetery established.

    1846 - Population of Hopedale Community is 70.

    1852 - Community population reaches 200.

    1854 - The Home School, a boarding and day school operated by the Hopedale
    Community, established. The school was first operated by Mr. and Mrs. Morgan Bloom,
    and later by Adin Ballou's daughter and son-in-law.

    1855 - School built on north side of South Hopedale Cemetery.

    1856, March 8 - George and Ebenezer Draper withdraw their investment in the stock of
    the Hopedale Community. Since they own three-quarters of the stock, this essentially
    brings about the end of the Community.
               Warren Dutcher moves to Hopedale to manufacture loom temples in partnership
    with the Draper brothers under the name, Dutcher Temple Company.

    1860,  April 14 - Last issue of the Hopedale Community newspaper, The Practical
    Christian printed.
    1860 - What would later become the Unitarian Church is built.

    1861 - The Home School closed.
                William F. Draper enlists in Army.   

    1865 - 1875 - Draper Company erects double family houses along Social, Union and
    Cemetery streets.

    1868 - Ebenezer Draper retires and sells his share of the E.D. & G. Draper Company.
    William F. Draper joins his father in the firm, and the name is changed to George Draper
    & Son.  Some years later, when Eben and George Albert join, the company name
    becomes George Draper & Sons. "The small mechanic shop [the Little Red Shop] was
    renamed the Hopedale Machine Company in 1868 and transferred to the west side of
    the river [still south of Freedom Street] to make room for additional construction." Model
    Company Town, John S. Garner, p. 132.

    1869 - Henry Patrick's Store established.

    1870s - 1880s - Adin Street completed and large estates built. (General Draper's home
    on the present site of the junior/senior  high school was the first.)

    1873, December 15 - The end of the Hopedale Community essentially occurred in
    1856, but it still owned a few properties. "The final act of transfer was executed on the
    15th of December, 1873, when the Trustees of the Community conveyed to the Trustees
    of the Hopedale Parish, a religious body formed a few years before, 'all right, title,
    interest and control in, unto and over Community Square, the Meeting-house standing
    thereon and the Hopedale Cemetery.'"  History of the Hopedale Community, Adin Ballou,
    p. 307.

    1874 - The Old House, the home of the original members of the Hopedale Community, is
                First gas and water lines installed.                            

    1886 - Hopedale separates from Milford.
               Fire department formed, equipped with 900 feet of hose, 36 fire pails, four
    ladders and a hose carriage.

    1887 - Ebenezer and George Draper die.
               Town Hall, a gift to the town by George Draper, constructed.
               The Draper Company embarks on a program to develop an automatic loom.
               Telephone service, available in Milford since 1880, extended to Hopedale and

    1907 - Seven houses on a no longer existing part of Union Street (near the cemetery)
    moved to Freedom Street, where they became known as the Seven Sisters.

    1909 - Eben Sumner Draper elected Governor of Massachusetts. He serves for two one-
    year terms.
               Joseph Bancroft dies.

    Last Hopedale HIigh School Washington trip.

    November - Lake Wales Plastics of Westboro purchases West Foundry from
    Rockwell. (This purchase being the reason the foundry has been under separate
    ownership since that time.)

    1984 - Construction at Pinecrest development begins.

    1985 - Lake Wales Plastics, operating out of the former West Foundry, closes. It had
    also operated as L&S Plastics and Commodore Plastics.

    1988 - Water leak at Draper plant results in it being closed and the small companies that
    had been located there, including  Incase (makers of display boxes, jewelry boxes, cases
    for pens, eyeglass cases, etc), Consolidated Coating (contract spray painting of parts
    for various items), Opus (bird feeders), and Ironworks Gym, and probably others,

    2016 - 2018 -  The houses at 114-116 Mendon Street, 124 Mendon Street, and Billy
    Draper's Store were razed in 2020 2016. Three houses on the northwest corner of the
    Mendon Street-Hopedale Street intersection, as well as the Cumberland Farms store,
    were taken down in 2017, to make room for the new Cumberland Farms The South
    Hopedale School was also taken down in 2017. 138 Hopedale Street was razed on
    January 25, 2018. The stone crusher at Rosenfeld's was taken down in 2018..Click here
    for photos of all of these.