Search: 'Ashmont Station, Peabody Square, Dorchester, MBTA, T, railroad, subway, rapid transit, trolley' (807 of 3777)previous | next | slideshow | close
No. 1011: Hollingsworth Mill, Neponset River
Postcard #1011

Postcard. Caption on front: Old Hollingsworth Mill, Neponset River. Postally unused. On verso: Genuine Hand-colored. Pub. by Putnam Art Co., Grove Hall, Boston.

 A new enterprise, small in pounds, but large in power, was the establishment of the first paper-mill. In the year 1750 Thomas Hancock, Mr. Deering, and other gentlemen of Boston, desirous to introduce the manufacture of paper into the province, erected a mill in Dorchester, procured utensils and such workmen as could be obtained, but, after a few years of experimenting, found it a losing business, ceased operations, and sold the mill for a small sum to Mr. Jeremiah Smith, of Milton. It remained unoccupied till about the year 1760, when Mr. Boies, who married Mr. Smith's daughter, found an Englishman who understood the business and who made a success of it. In those days there were no junk men to collect rags. The mill-owners advertised that they would be in Boston on Saturday mornings at a certain store, and would purchase rags. The women and boys came on those days, bringing their rag bags and selling to the manufacturer. The great-grandsons of Mr. Boies are running a paper-mill on the same spot. There are about as many rags used at the present mill in one day as Mr. Boies used in a year. In connection with the advertisement for rags appeared the following bit of poetry, published in the Boston News Letter in 1769:

"Rags are beauties which concealed lie;
But, when in Paper, how it charms the eye!
Pray, save your rags, new beauties to discover;
For of paper truly every one's a lover.
By Pen and Press such knowledge is displayed
As wouldn't exist if Paper was not made.
Wisdom of things mysterious, divine, Illustriously doth on Paper shine." Source: Elizabeth W. Hazard.
Published in The Dorchester Book. Boston: Branch Alliance of Christ Church (Unitarian), 1899.
Do you know something about this topic? Do you have other pictures or items or knowledge to share? What about a personal story? Are you a collector? Do you have questions? Contact us here.
Created: July 26, 2003   Modified: July 26, 2003