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Inquiry Question

Historical Context

Map 1




Table of

Locating the Site

Map 2: Great Falls/S.U.M. Historic District[Map 2] with link to larger version of map.
(Published with permission of Department of Community Development, Paterson, NJ)

Key to Map 2:
1. Barbour Flax Spinning Company Complex, 1860-1881. One of the largest linen works in the U.S. in the late 19th century.
2. Dolphin Mill Complex, 1844, 1869. Initially spun hemp into rope, later produced jute carpeting.
3. Rogers Locomotive Company Complex, 1871-1881. The largest of three locomotive plants in Paterson in the late 19th century. Continued in operation until 1926.
4. S.U.M. Upper Raceway, 1827-1846.
5. Casper Silk Mill, 1900-1915.
6. S.U.M. Middle Raceway, 1792-1802.
7. Cooke Locomotive Company Complex, 1830s, 1881.
8. Hamilton Mill, includes remains of first S.U.M. cotton mill. Used for silk weaving and throwing in the 1910s. Damaged by fire.
9. Franklin Mill, ca. 1870, ca. 1920. Built as a cotton mill, later used to produce machinery, steam fire engines, locomotives. Housed a foundry and silk weaving in the 1910s.
10. Essex Mill, 1850s, 1870s. Incorporates portion of 1803 Old Yellow Mill used for experiments in manufacturing paper in continuous sheets. Later produced silk mosquito netting. Used for silk weaving in the 1910s.
11. Allied Textile Printers Complex, 1836 with many later additions. The first Colt revolver was manufactured in the 1836 Gun Mill building. Experiments in producing silk were begun here in 1838. John Ryle, the first to manufacture silk successfully, operated a silk works in the building from 1840 to his death in 1887. In the 1910s, most of the complex housed one of Paterson's largest silk dye works. Other buildings were used for silk weaving. The complex was seriously damaged by fire in the 1980s.
12. Congdon Mill, ca. 1915. Used by various silk manufacturers.
13. Phoenix Mill, ca. 1813, 1826-27, 1880. Originally a cotton mill, was used for silk beginning in the 1860s. Also manufactured silk-processing equipment. Used for silk weaving in 1910s.
14. Harmony and Industry Mills, 1876, 1878-79. Harmony Mill initially used for cotton. Both mills owned by William Adams and Co., silk manufacturers. Used for silk dyeing and weaving in 1910s.
15. S.U.M. Lower Raceway, 1807.

Questions for Map 2

1. Using the key, examine Map 2 carefully. Locate the upper, middle, and lower raceways. These canals carried water from the falls to the mills. Turbines and gears converted it into power to operate machinery. The S.U.M. expanded the raceways as the needs of manufacturers for land and water rights grew. The mills along the raceways continued to use water power until the early 20th century. Why might they have used water power after steam, electricity, and other sources of power became available? Why would this have been a profitable operation for the S.U.M.?

2. How many different industries were located in the mills in the historic district? How many of the mills were used for silk?

3. Locate the area marked "Dublin." Many of the houses in this area date from the early 19th century. Both owners and workers lived in Dublin during that period. Why do you think that was the case? By the early 20th century, those who could afford to had moved out to the suburbs, which could now be reached by streetcar. Why do you think people would have wanted to move out of the city if they had the opportunity?

* The map on this screen has a resolution of 72 dots per inch (dpi), and therefore will print poorly. You can obtain a larger version of Map 2, but be aware that the file may take as much as 68 seconds to load with a 28.8K modem.



Comments or Questions

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