Textiles are once again being produced in Stafford Springs. Eight months after the Warren Corporation mills closed, ending the industry in Connecticut, the newly-reopened company has taken its first work order.
The mills were bought by Florida-based American Woolen Company.
CEO Jacob Harrison Long said he’s confident the business can be revived and be a commercial success. "The idea is that American Woolen’s approach on the industry is a different approach," he said. "We want to stress manufacturing, the various elements. We want Stafford to become a destination for people who think that the textile industry in America can come back."
The Warren mills have operated in Stafford Springs since the 1850s, employing generations of families in the town. When the business closed last December, 86 people were put out of work.
Congressman Joe Courtney visited the reopened mill Wednesday. He said it’s amazing to see the looms back in action. "This is really one of the pillars of Stafford," he said. "The closing was just a real harsh blow to the area, and so giving this place new life, and giving people an opportunity to come back... again, it’s just been an institution that goes to the identity of the community."
The mill’s first order is for fabric that will be made into pea coats for the U.S. Navy.