Dorchester Atheneum
Friday, January 22, 2021
Site Tips
> Home
> Agriculture
> Architecture
> Artists
> Authors
> Books
> Cemeteries
> Churches
> Dorchester Historical Society
> Entertainment
> Entertainers
> Industry & Commerce
   > Stephen Badlam, 1751-
   > Walter Baker Chocolate Co.
   > Blue Hill Bank of Dorchester
   > Dorchester Pottery
   > Gleason Pewter & Silversmith
   > Papermaking
   > More on Industry & Commerce..
> Institutions
> Maps
> Monuments
> Myths
> Postcard Images
> Public Figures
> Schools
> Town History
> Walking Tours

Papermaking on the Neponset
Paper Mills map
Click image for more information
 The "Act for the Encouragement of Making Paper" passed on September 13, 1728 by the General Court, gave Daniel Henchman (a well-to-do bookseller of Boston) and his partners, Thomas Hancock (uncle of the illustrious John), Gillam Phillips, Benjamin Faneuil, and Henry Deming, the exclusive right to manufacture paper in the Province for ten years.

1) Henchman and his company rented an old mill on the Milton side of the Neponset at Milton Lower Falls, just downstream from the present highway bridge near Walter Baker's and began papermaking in 1730.

2) James Boise and Richard Clark formed a partnership in 1764 and bought the old slitting mill (a mill that produced the iron strips from which cut nails were made) at Milton Upper Falls (now Mattapan Square) also on the Milton side of the Neponset. Eventually the mill was bought in 1828 by Tileston & Hollingsworth who sold it in 1915 to a lumber company.

3) James Boies built another mill on the Milton side of the Neponset in 1770, one-half interest in which he sold to his son-in-law, Hugh McLean. In 1777 Boies and McLean absorbed Boies and Clark, and in 1809 Tileston & Hollingsworth bought the mill from McLean's widow.

4) The Sumner Mill was built on River Street in what is now Hyde Park in 1773 by George Clark (son of Richard), who sold a half interest in it to William Sumner, who acquired complete ownership in 1796. Sumner failed, and Tileston & Hollingsworth leased the mill in 1806. Later they bought the adjoining land and built their modern paper mill there.

5) A gristmill was built on the Dorchester side of the Neponset in 1774 on the site of the old Israel Stoughton gristmill of 1634. In 1790 the gristmill was converted to the manufacture of paper by James Babcock and later leased to Tileston & Hollingsworth.

6) Jeremiah Smith Boies built a paper mill in 1793 between the Lower and Upper Falls on the Dorchester side of the Neponset. It was here that Mark Hollingsworth went to work in 1798 after learning the trade of papermaking in Delaware, and 1801 he joined with Edmund I. Tileston to buy the mill and establish the firm of Tileston & Hollingsworth.

7) In 1863 the Dorchester Cotton and Iron Co. Sold property at Central Avenue on the Dorchester side of the Neponset to Tileston & Hollingsworth to build their Eagle Mill. This building later became the property of Walter Baker & Co.

8) The present rapid transit terminal in Mattapan Square on the north side of the Neponset is on the site of the old Gillespie Mill. This was built originally as a fulling mill, later used as a snuff mill, and was converted by Boies and McLean to a chocolate mill in 1778. In 1809 Tileston & Hollingsworth bought it from Agnes McLean (Hugh's widow) and adapted it to the making of paper.


Wallingford, Howard. Papermaking on the Neponset. Boston: Tileston & Hollingworth Co., 1951.

Related Images: showing 8 of 101 (more results)
Here are some images from the Atheneum archive related to this topic. Click on any of these images to open a slideshow of all 101 images.
Tenean BeachSt. Ann's SchoolView of Neponset RiverDr. Boyden's Pectoral Cough Candy
Paper Mills mapStone Bridge over Neponset, MattapanMap detail Neponset StationMap detail showing trolley car houses at Neponset
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: November 1, 2003   Modified: June 14, 2006