Town of Eaton Early Industries

    Industry               Product(s)            Lifespan                                 Notes 
Comb Factory             combs                  1808-1840          Founded by Bennet Bicknell of Mansfield, CT. Carried on 
                                                                   by Johnathan Gurley until 1840. (Morrisville) 
Eaton Woolen             woolen & cotton        1817-1845          Never a financial success despite the hard work of numerous 
Manufacturing Co.        millers & manuf.                          owners, the mill underwent massive expansion before burning 
                                                                   to the ground. The company was never rebuilt. (Eaton) 
Monitor Mills            woolen cloth           c.1820-late 19th   Started by Abner Isbell, the company weathered several 
                                                century            owners & a disastrous fire (1852) when Green & Co. reorganized 
                                                                   the mills as the Monitor Mills at a total cost of $100,000) 
Cotton Factory           cotton products;       1825-mid 19th      This was one of the 3 cotton factories which Madison County 
                         cloth                  century            was credited with having in the 1832 census. Founder: David 
                                                                   Rogers. (Pierceville) 
Cross Brothers or        foundry; produced      1830-1899          Founded by Jefferson Cross who died (1850); it was continued 
Morrisville Furnace      stoves, plowpoints,                       by his sons, Jefferson & George, but had ceased by 1899. 
                         wagon & sleigh                            (Morrisville) 
                         irons, stove  
Babbit & Darling         saleratus (used in      c.1830s           Babbit & Darling used the buildings occupied by the Bicknell, 
                         cooking)                                  Coman & Norton distillery. (Morrisville) 
Howard & Markham         carriages & horse-      1835              This company, which started out grandiosely as a carriage  
                         drawn vehicles                            works, ended up being merely a blacksmith shop. (Pine Woods) 
Bicknell, Coman &        distillery for spir-    1836-1860         Bennet Bicknell was a co-founder of this business which for 
Norton                   ituous liquors                            many years shipped its products to New York City. 
Torrey Machine Shop      machinery               1841-mid 19th     According to James H. Smith, Torrey produced the 1st 
                                                 century           steam engine ever built in the town of Eaton. 
Pierce,Cady, Crocker     cotton and              1844-1857         Founded (1844) by J.O. Pierce after whom Pierceville was 
& Co.                    woolen goods                              named. After the senior Pierce's death (1850), his son took 
                                                                   over & at that time it received the name Pierce, Cady & 
                                                                   Crocker. The company fell victim to the financial crisis of 
Eureka MIlls             woolen goods            1845-1870s        Otis Barnes & David Mitchell erected a carding mill, c.1845. 
                                                                   In 1862, the mills were enlarged & called the Eureka Mills, 
                                                                   employing 40 people & manuf. woolen cloth. (West Eaton) 
B. Tillinghast & Son     leather products         1830-1880s       Bradley Tillinghast, from Mansfield, CT, bought out his  
                                                                   brother's business (1830). For thirty years Tillinghast supplied 
                                                                   local demand for boots & shoes. In the 1880s all leather made 
                                                                   here was shipped to Boston. (Morrisville) 
Wood, Taber & Morse      machinery for           1848-1890         Founded by the Wood brothers, Ethan & Allen N., the company 
                         woolen & cotton                           successfully manufactured machinery for woolen & cotton mills. 
                         mills; castings; ag-                      When these mills declined, the brothers moved to Utica. Allen 
                         ricultural machin-                        sold (1859) his Utica interest, returned to Eaton & organized 
                         ery; portable                             the company which, between 1859 & 1880, manufactured 3000                                                  
                         steam engines                             engines. The Utica factory existed from 1857 to 1872. (Eaton) 
Silk Factory             silk                     1853-1862        Founded by F.F. Stevens & John F. Gurley; converted (1862)  
                                                                   into a cheese factory. The building subsequently burned. 
W. P. Lewis & Co.        harness                  1860s            Harness manufacturers & dealers in saddlery hardware, oak & 
                                                                   hemlock harness leather; owned with B. Tillinghast & Son. 
Dwight Graham & Co.      agricultural             mid-late 19th    The Graham Co. oved (1869) to Eagleville (or Eaton Center) 
                         machinery                century          from Morrisville to take advantage of the better waterpower. 
Morton Furniture Co.     household                1880s-1930s      Located on Water St., A.D. Morton purchased his bldg. from 
                         furniture                                 Gardner Morse who had used it for manufacturing wooden  
                                                                   cisterns & pump logs. (Eaton) 
L. Bernstein             Havana & domes-          1900             Factory & shop on Main St. "Leader" brand was one of most 
                         tic cigars                                popular. Was also a jeweler. (Morrisville) 

Note: This information provided (with permission) from the Madison County Historical Society publication Country Roads Revisited. MCHS for information publications & services the Society can provide.
Date: Monday, March 08, 1999 08:15 AM

Home Page