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Sheldon Historical
Society Past Events
 
Synonymous with Sheldon Spring, the "Mill" know by various names since its founding by J T Shipley in 1912, shaped the community from then until the present time.

From Ashton (1) P 142-145
The Missisquoi Pulp And Paper Company

"Joseph T Shepley came to Sheldon Springs from Newport in 1894. He was born in Groton, Mass March 29, 1846. J.T. Shepley built the first part of what later became a larger pulp mill. As early as 1895 the Missisquoi Mill produced ground wood pulp. At one time the Mill contributed $100,000 annually to farmers of Vermont for spruce logs. In 1904 J. T Shepley was elected to represent Sheldon in General Assembly."

(Note: Copies of documents on file with the Sheldon Historical Society cover the original acquisition of property along the Missisquoi River acquired by Mr Shepley and associates)

"The Mill became incorporated as the Missisquoi Pulp and Paper Co. in 1912. Herbert E Raymond, who was born in Cambridge, Mass became the designer and builder of the plant in 1912. Those who incorporated were A. P. Ramage, Herbert Raymond and George C Gill. Gill invested $50,00 to begin the work of installing the first paper making machine. Herbert E Raymond was responsible for general management, engineering and mechanical development. His official title was President. He was especially proud of the fact that his company was able to operate continuously throughout the depression, frequently on a reduced basis."

"The manufacture of cardboard and Bristol board of various types and weights were made. Some of the paper was converted into finished products at its subsidiary, the Fonda Paper Co. at Utica, NY. A large part of the theater tickets used throughout the country had their origin in Sheldon Springs. Much of the paper manufactured in Sheldon Springs was shipped to all parts of the country and to many foreign countries. "

"250 men were employed at this mill with three shifts operating day and night with the exception of Sundays. During World War II the mill was seldom shut down, unless repairs were needed. Some jobs had only two shifts with men working in twelve hour tours. The 250 men were earning $350,000 for their work each year."

"At first Sheldon Springs was called a 'company town' because the Company built nearly all the houses, maintained a store and several community buildings. The tenants were provided with electricity and water. (Not drinking water) Thus the Company ownership served to bring back a considerable amount of money paid out in wages." "Many of the Company's houses were sold in 1972"

"The second paper machine was installed in 1924-1927. An addition was added to the finishing department in 1928. During the years 1951-1952 a 600lb boiler was installed. Clay Coasters were added during the 1969-1970 period. An effluent plant was constructed in 1972"

"Many changes have occurred since the original pulp mill began operating. Water was the main source of power. Then the plant began generating their own electricity with its water power. Later coal was used, and now gas and oil and diesel fuel help generate the electricity, yet some electricity is purchased" (Around 1980) but the mill has since beefed up its hydro generation and added solar generating panels in the field next to the mill.)

"The subsidary plant at Utica, New York moved to St. Albans in 1952 and merged with the Missisquoi Corp under the name Standard Packaging. At this time net sales for the Standard Packing were better than $9,000,000 a year. It was called the largest paper industry in the U.S. in dollar value of product."
Division manager of Standard Packaging in this era was W.B. McFeeters."

(Photo to right is titled :The Mill Farm)

"Among the executives of the Missisquoi Pulp and Paper Mill since the beginning are these names: Joseph T Shepley, A.P. Ramage, Herbert Raymond, Theodore Lyman, Albert Backman, Lawson Ramage, Cleo Towle, Walter Burnham, George C Gill, John Fale, Alden Sears, Roy Donna, Thomas Phillips, Frank Farrel, Sheridan Dow, Kenneth Lothian, Kenneth Bushey, and William McFeeters." (Not presented in any significant chronological order)

"The International Brotherhood of Firemen, Oilers and Helpers Union came into the Missisquoi plant on Nov 12, 1942. These were the charter members: Carmi Comings, Rix Williams, Clarence Tatro, Dennis Bushey, Clyde Lothian, William Pryme, Lee Smith, Edward Searle and Horace Tipper."
"Some of the charter members who formed Local 340 of the International Brotherhood of Pulp Sulphite and Paper Mill Workers on Oct 12, 1937 were: Cami Comings, Steward Arel, Lloyd Cantell, Maxwell Bullis, Rock Dubois, Kenneth Jacobs, Douglas Stolliker, Harry Sullivan, Robert Davis, Peter Reel, Donal More, John Lacha;elle and Albert Jocelyn"

Photo to right titled "Union Field Day" "Labor Day Field Day Local 340"

Additional Photos Here of the mill from Library of Congress Collection

One of the outstanding accomplishments was the harnessing of water for power to the mill. At first a low dam was used and then a new high dam was constructed. You can find these photos Here.

In May 2013 a group of white water rafters published a video of running the rapids below the dam at the Mill and published it on You Tube

"Good People Make Good Paper" The Boise Cascade Story" You Tube 1986 Great Video to watch for more recent history