Pioneer Mill Opening Jan 15, 1869
From The Bangor Daily Whig and Courier
Opening of the Pioneer Woolen Mill at Pittsfield
Going Hathorn, Esq. of Pittsfield, having during the past season erected a fine woolen mill, and it being competed ready for the machinery to be put up, was dedicated on Wednesday evening last by a grand Levee and dance.
The building is a substantially well finished frame building, 50 × 100, three stories high. It is intended when in full operation to run four setts (sic) of looms, but it is to be started with but two setts, which are now ready to be put up and the mill will be in operation by the first of March. The class of woolens intended to be manufactured, are shawls and plaids, and the factory will give employment to one hundred hands. It is to be operated by Messrs. Dobson, Davis & Co., an experienced firm of Scotch manufacturers, who have purchased the property of Mr. Hathorn, who will prosecute the business with energy and it is believed with success.
The cost of the mill ready to commence business, will be $35,000, but will cost when all the setts are in, $50,000. Mr. Hathorn is deserving of credit for taking this step in the way of building up the manufacturing interest of our State, and we hope his example will be followed by others, till every stream and water privilege in our State shall resound with the hum of spindles.
The mill is divided off into convenient rooms to accommodate the various branches of the business. The first floor containing the engine room, office, and a room for the heaviest machinery. The second and third stories containing but a room each, a large hall extending the entire length and breadth of the building. In the third story there is not a single pillar or post to obstruct the view, and it proved to be admirably adapted to the purposes of the Levee and dance.There was a large attendance at the house warming, extra trains from Bangor, Waterville and Dexter, having brought large numbers from these places and intervening towns on the routes. A train from this city carried over about forty couples, and the Bangor Cornet Band, which furnished fine music for the concert and afterwards for the dance. There were not less than fifteen hundred present during the evening. The beautiful hall in the third story showed a handsome sight when one hundred and sixty-eight couples went on to the floor in one dance. But these were not all that danced at once, for finding the upper hall insufficient, another Quadrille Band was improvised and furnished music for another large company of dancers in the next room below. The whole occasion was one of great enjoyment, the company being a good one in every respect, and nothing occurring from first to last to mar the pleasure of the whole.
It was stated in the advertisement that ample refreshments would be furnished by the ladies, and the promise was carried out to the letter, the quantity furnished being most abundant and the quality of the best. The entertainment was kept up until nearly four oclock. Quite a handsome sum must have been realized from the proceeds, which is to be devoted to repairing the union church, or more properly perhaps the meeting house, for we trust that the church does not stand in need of repairs. The party from this city arrived home at a quarter before six, having made the trip in safety under the careful supervision of Conductor Small, who is a host in more senses than one. All voted that they had enjoyed the biggest time of the kind in which it had ever been their good fortune to participate. Success, say we, to the Pioneer Woolen Factory, and may Pittsfield keep Going in the future as she has in the past.