---There is perhaps no spot on the whole valley of the Connecticut, that strikes the eye of the stranger so pleasantly, as our own unpretending, but bustling little village. The houses are grouped together so naturally as to form a very picturesque view from the hill that overhangs the village; and as you step from the busy street to the 'common,' the open view of the distant hills to the north is truly magnificent. The growth of our village for the last four years, has been extremely rapid. The amount of business is increased four fold. Houses and stores are springing up as by magic, and the sound of the trowel and hammer strikes on the ear from every quarter. The mechanics have about thirty shops, and are distinguished for their industry, wealth and intelligence: they are emphatically the 'bone and muscle' of our population.--There are also fifteen stores of various kinds.--Among the principal manufacturing establishments, we may notice the paper mill of Fessenden, &Co., which throws out about half a ton of paper daily, and their printing office, where seven power presses are in motion.---Near by is the machine shop of Mr. Gore, where a beautiful steam engine, made by himself, is in operation. Mr. Gore has obtained great credit for the cheapness and excellence of his engines, and has made several for iron foundries and saw mills, which are said to surpass any others in simplicity, cheapness and excellence.
The steam furnace of Messrs. Hall & Barrett, is in successful operation, and about a ton of iron is melted daily for the 'castings' which are principally used in the neighboring machine shops.---We cannot pass by the enterprising firm of Thomas, Woodcock, &Co. They now give employment to about 40 workmen, and as their works extend, will doubtless employ a larger number. Their paper mill contains the latest and most improved machinery.--Our sheet is a fair sample of their paper, which is made by the 'mile,' and is dried by steam; and our printing press, which was invented by Mr. Thomas, was made at their machine shop. They manufacture a great amount of paper machinery, which is sent to the western states. Their new tannery, their saw and grist mills, clothiers and carding works, give to that part of the village the appearance of great life and activity.--The manufacture of pearl ornaments, is soon to be commenced and carried on to great extent.
We are not very slow either in other things.--We have five lawyers! and a pair of doctors and parsons and editors. We have schools and lyceums, temperance societies and fire engines. On the whole, we have plenty of every thing in the hive but drones--and our working-men are so busy that it is really unfashionable to be idle.
Independent Inquirer, Saturday, September 21, 1833.
Our village is getting to be more and more a manufacturing place. We are a busy people, and contrive to make one hand wash the other quite comfortably, by converting the "raw material" into a great variety of useful articles, for the special use and benefit of our well beloved friends, the purchasers and consumers. If the spirit of enterprise continues to walk abroad, the confined limits of "Whetstone brook" with its double waterfall, will be entirely insufficient for the giant grasp of our mechanics. The pleasant haunts of "West River" will be invaded, its green alleys, cool retreats, and "bosky bournes," will become the scene of active bustle, and echo to the stroke of the hammer and the din of machinery. But look at us as we are now:---we have a Paper Factory, a Book Factory, a Bell Factory, a Leather Factory, a Pearl Factory, a Board and Shingle Factory (anglice Saw Mill) &c. &c. &c., all of which are well known to the good people hereabouts. We have as yet, however, no Incorporated Company, for manufacturing on a large scale. But there are abundant materials to work upon, and we have some people in our mind's eye, (familiar faces too) who are admirably fitted to become members of a joint stock company. The corporation which we speak of, we would have perpetual, and subject to an annual tax. It should not be for the purpose of making Leather, or Paper--but it should be for the manufacture and promulgation of Lies, Scandal, and small items of local news, and should bear the cognomen of the "The Fib Factory." We have, in reality, such a factory now--but it is not tangible, palpable--it has no local habitation. You may chase a report from pillar to post, and from post to pillar, but you shall not alight upon the spot from whence it emanated, neither shall you find the agent who shall stand responsible for its truth. You will find many who heard Mr. Blank mention it, and Mr. Blank will tell you of many others who have said the same thing. But you might as well follow the windings of a labyrinth, or hold an eel in your fingers, or "do any-thing most hard," as trace a report up to its source. "Mr. Flam is certainly very particular in his attentions to Miss Clam--I am told it is a match to a dead certainty." "You don't say so! who told you?" "Oh, it's common report--I've been told of it half a dozen times."--And so it goes on--growing as it goes--'till the very father who begat the lie would not know his own bantling. And this is the very fault which we should like to see remedied. This is the reason why we would have a regular factory for turning out fibs and foul slanders. We would have an Agent directly responsible for all the base coin afloat, and one who would stand god-father to all the lies of the parish. He should make it his business to stand at all the notorious corners of the streets, at the taverns, and at the shops. He should seize upon the slightest and most unfounded rumor, cast it into his fib-mill, and turn it out a real palpable and probable lie. Let such a machine be put in operation--let such a company be organized, and there would be found abundance of people to patronize the mill, and to subscribe for the stock. As the case stands at present, there is no regularity, no system, no responsibility. Lies come tumbling out in the most headlong and grotesque manner. Lie meets lie, and hardly knows its fellow:--all is confusion and disorder, and untruth runs riot.
Let our friends think of it--a Fib Factory would tell well. The unsuspecting Agent is at this moment walking past our window, with his mouth full of news, "big with the fate of Cato, and of Rome!" We will hail him and get his opinion on this important subject.
Independent Inquirer, Saturday, May 10, 1834.