This writing is a follow-up to an earlier post I composed about the Northern Rail Trail. I included another photo of this building on that post with a notation that I would do some more research and find out what it’s function was when operational.
I was correct in my original guess that this was a textile mill. This building was called the Baltic Mills. Originally established in 1886, it went through several ownerships. The last owner to operate the mill was the American Woolen Company. According to a book that details the history of the mills owned by the American Woolen Company, the chief products were “principally men’s overcoating stock, and friezes, chinchillas, and cheviots.” In addition, the mill generated its own electricity and also helped to power part of the town! The book states that the company “in addition to lighting its mills, furnishes light for the streets of the town and for use in dwellings and stores, from its 6oo-light alternating dynamos.” Cool! The operation also supported over three hundred mill workers at the time.
For additional reading on the history of the mills owned by American Woolen Company, here is a link to the Google book.