Returning to the center of Town, cross the Depot Street Bridge (The Steel Bridge) and
directly in front of you is Beacon Mill Village. Now residential units, Beacon Falls grew
up around the handsome brick factory complex, listed on the National Register of Historic
Places. Since 1850 the complex had been the American Hard Rubber Company, The Home Woolen
Company, the Standard Woolen Company, Beacon Power and Mill and the Beacon Falls Rubber
Shoe Company. It is even said to be haunted by the spirit of an electrician who was
electrocuted while at work there.
During the Civil War, The Home Woolen Company supplied shawls to Union soldiers. By
1870 the Home Woolen Company was producing 13,000 shawls per month. But the soldiers came
home with long woolen coats that were made elsewhere. So shawls were no longer needed and
the company went out of business in 1880. The Town was pretty quiet for a short time after
But Beacon Falls experienced a boom when the Beacon Falls Rubber Shoe Company moved
into the complex. In 1898 George Lewis founded the company. His son Tracy Lewis later
became president and ran the company until 1922. The company was very successful and
maintained a band which played every noon and gave concerts in the park on summer
evenings. The Beacon Falls Rubber Shoe Company produced the nationally known Top Notch
brand, with offices in Boston, San Francisco and New York. In 1915, the company hired the
Olmstead Brothers from Massachusetts, sons of the man who designed Central Park in New
York, to create a plan to develop the Town. Most of the Town was on the hill behind the
Depot Street Bridge
53 Beacon Mill Village
Take a left down North Main
Street where you will pass on your right 54
four identical houses built at the time of the Civil War.
At the stop sign at the end of
the street, turn right on Church Street which becomes Wolfe Avenue.
Go .3 mile to the United Church of Christ which will be on your right.