The Hopkinton Town Library Presents:

The Contoocook Village Quilt

A Digital Library
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Kingsbury & Davis Machine Shop

by Harriet DePinto

 

In 1890 two inventors joined together and built a three story wooden building on River Street, Contoocook, and took the title of Kingsbury­Davis. This building was run by the dam and water wheel to produce all the electricity necessary for lights and power. It was interesting to count 130 windows, 12 panes to a window, making 1560 panes of glass.

 

These two gentlemen, Walter Scott Davis from Contoocook and Addison Kingsbury, South Coventry, Connecticut, wore heavy beards. When standing side by side they reminded one of "The Smith Brothers" of the cough drop fame.

 

Mr. Davis invented the Box Machine in 1896. This company took over the first floor-then latter took part of the  silk mill where they manufactured “Leader” shoe box machines, Quadruple Staying Machines, a Stacker and a Lign Box Machine.

 

In 1891 Hiram and Lena Conant and their two sons, Dwight and Frank, silk throwsters, came from Petersburg, Virginia where they set up a silk mill on the second floor. They ran this mill until 1925 when the rayon industry and European labor made it too costly to stay in business.

 

On the third floor there was a needle shop which made latch needles. Between the silk mill and the needle shop over 40 townspeople were employed.

 

1951 Merle Patenaude purchased the building from the Davis Estate, using it to raise chickens. He sold it to the Town in April of 1969.

 

It was razed by R.K. Boyd in November, 1969. Hopefully, the Town is planning a park where trees will be planted and parking space made available.

 

I am mindful of the help I received in regards to color, dates, and data from Rachael Johnson, William Cressy, Hilda Conant, Floyd and Marion Hastings, Ruth Blanchard and Charlotte Dustin. I am most grateful to all of them.

 

Harriet DePinto

Maple Street

 

Quilt square of the Kingsbury & Davis Machine Shop

Back to The Grange Hall

Next to Old Dam

LOC Subject Headings

Businesses -- New Hampshire -- Hopkinton -- Pictorial works

Businesses -- New Hampshire -- Contoocook -- Pictorial works

Historic buildings -- New Hampshire -- Hopkinton -- Pictorial works

Historic buildings -- New Hampshire -- Contoocook -- Pictorial works

Textile industry -- New Hampshire -- Hopkinton -- History

Textile industry -- New Hampshire -- Contoocook -- History