The Frost Free Library.-The town has a fine public library, founded by Rufus S. Frost, in 1865, who donated $15.000.00 for the purpose. Of this amount $7,000.00 were devoted to the erection of a substantial granite building, $3,000.00 more were used in the purchase of books, and the remainder placed at interest, the revenue therefrom to be used in sustaining the library and in the purchase of new books,
The Cheshire Blanket Co., whose mills are located at the village, was organized in the spring of 1873, the proprietors being C. O. Whitney and AV. H. Clark. Their main building is a wood structure 72×65 feet, two stories in height, and contains five sets of machinery. Their. No. 2 mill is of wood. 40×45 feet, two stories, and has two sets of machinery. They have also two store-houses, of wood, and a picker and boiler house, of brick. They use both steam and water-power, employ ninety hands in the manufacture of blankets and satinet goods, turning out $150,000.00 worth per annum.
The Monadnock Blanket Co., located at the village, was incorporated in 1869, with a capital of $20,000.00, which, about five years later, was increased to $30,000.00. The first officers were W. H. Wilkinson, president; S. S. Wilkinson, clerk and treasurer; and Charles Shrigley, superintendent; They purchased of Thurston & Wilkinson the stone mill erected for a saw and grist-mill, by Charles Holman, about 1840, which they converted into a blanket mill, with two sets of machinery. In 1877 they doubled their capacity, and now have four sets of cards, four jacks and thirty looms. They manufacture street and stable blankets of medium grades, turning out about 1.500 bales of fifty blankets each per annum, employing fifty hands. The present officers of the concern are W. H. Wilkinson, of Springfield, president; S. S. Wilkinson, of Keene, treasurer; and E. P. Richardson, of Marlboro, superintendent.
George F. Winch’s pail factory is located at the village. It was purchased by his father, Nathan, of Dea. Simeon Whitcomb in 1852. He sold a half interest to William Nason, in 1867, and the remainder to Hosea Knight, at a subsequent date. At a later date he again became the owner of the works .and was connected with the business until 1879, when he sold out to his son. Mr. Winch employs fifteen hands and manufactures about 150,000 pails and buckets per annum.
The Thurston Manufacturing Co., located at the village, was organized in 1868, for the manufacture of picture knobs, door-stops, furniture fenders, clothes and hat pins, etc.
The O. R. Wiswall saw-mill and box factory, located on road 4, was built by Joseph Collins, about 1850, and came into Mr. Wiswall’s possession in 1869. The establishment employs twenty hands and can turn out 800 lock-corner packing-boxes per day. Mr. Wiswall died early in 1885.
Luther Hemenway, located at the village, employs five men in the manufacture of boxes, toys and wagon jacks.
James Townsend’s yarn and hosiery manufactory, located at the village, has been operated by him since July 4, 1837. He makes 7,000 pounds of yarn per year.
E. Willard Mason’s carriage shop, located at the village, was originally established by Rollins & Mason. Mr. Mason became sole owner in 1879, and has conducted the business alone since.
F. & G. A. Sherman’s sash and blind factory, located at Marlboro Depot, was established by them in the autumn of 1883. They employ twelve men and do about $1,000.00 worth of business per month.
C. Hodgkins & Son, located at the village, are engaged in the manufacture of all kinds of wood-working machinery. The business was established by Charles Buss, and was purchased by Mr. Hodgkins in 1880. They employ twelve men.
J & L. Knowlton’s pail and bucket factory, located at the village, was established by them in 1861. They employ fifteen men and manufacture 170,000 pails and 5,000 sap buckets per year.
Jarvis Adams’s box factory, located at Lowellville, gives employment to twelve men and turns out 200,000 boxes per year.
Miles F. Cudworth’s saw-mill, on road 9, gives employment to eight men and cuts about 300,000 feet of lumber per annum.
Levi A. Fuller’s saw-mill and box factory, on road 8, was built by him in 1872-73. He gives employment to from twelve to twenty men in getting out lumber and chair-stock and in manufacturing boxes.
D. R. & F. A. Cole’s grist-mill, on road 7, corner of 4, was built by Jesse Collins about 1835, and was purchased by the present owners January 1, 1885. It has three runs of stones and does both custom and merchant work.
A. G. Mann’s granite quarry, located on road 10, was opened about forty years ago. Mr. Mann, a resident of Worcester, Mass., employs about fifty men in getting out granite.