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Harry S. Bartholomew - Bristol, CT


History Overview


The factory called "Grinding Shop" was built by George W. Bartholomew, 1846, for use in the manufacture of table cutlery.  The street was one of the pieces of abandoned road, called in the deed of 1828 to Asa Bartholomew, "Mill Road." 

Re-opened, 1846, and known as "The New Road," until 1882, when the first Bristol directory published the name "Warner Street."  The cutlery business was closed when Mr. Bartholomew in the fall of 1848 went with his friends to California.

In 1855 George Wells and Harry Shelton Bartholomew, (father and son) formed the partnership under firm name G. W. & H. S. Bartholomew to manufacture bit stock braces, beginning their project in the "Grinding Shop."

In the early sixties the business was removed to the former clock factories.  Soon after the removal of the Bartholomews, a wood turning enterprise was started and conducted at this place by Alpress, Carpenter & Company (Charles H. Alpress, Wm. B. Carpenter, Jr. and Augustus H. Warner). 

There were changes in the personnel of the firm.  C. H. Alpress' interest was bought by Henry A. Warner, father of Augustus (Carpenter & Warner).  The second change was in the purchase by Mr. H. A. Warner of W. B. Carpenter's share in the business. 

The firm then was H. A. & A. H. Warner till their removal to District No. 8, after the burning of the first (Grinding Shop) and second (New Factory) built on its site.  These fires were the beginning of a series of similar calamities sufficient to dishearten a common man.

Ruin's mark the locality of the Grinding Shop and its successor (1907).

The first manufacturer and builder known to have a business career at the location marked 61, was the remarkable beaver that built the first dam.  Date of construction unknown.  In 1788, Benjamin and William Jerome purchased from Amasa Ives an interest in the gristmill which was increased in 1803.  In 1809 William Jerome, 2d, was three-quarters owner with Isaac Graham owner of the remaining one-quarter.  The mill was sold to Byington and Graham (Martin Byington and Isaac Graham, Sen.), who conducted the mill for some years.  William Jerome, 2d, died 1821.

On the site of the gristmill or in it, George W. Bartholomew with his cousin Eli Bartholomew began to make clocks, 1828.  G. W. Bartholomew continued the business alone until 1840.

A second factory with bell was on the north side of the road (the bell was finally used in Bristol for a school-house), where decorating clock tablets and filling numbers for clock faces was done by young women.

The Winstons did a brisk wood turning business for five years - Possibly Allen Winston may have had for a short period an industry in this building.  Some of the Winstons made at one time coffee roasters and Edward M. Barnes of Peaceable Street made candle sticks in the basement.

Soon after 1860 G. W. and H. S. Bartholomew employed the Bunnell Brothers (Warren and Norris) of Burlington to move the bell shop across the street where it was joined to the first building to increase the room needed for the bit brace works. 

It was destroyed by fire 1884 when G. W. Bartholomew retired.

Harry Shelton Bartholomew built anew and was identified with this business at the time of his death, February 19, 1902.  His son Joseph Peck Bartholomew who had relieved his father of all care for several years continued the business until sold to Stanley Rule & Level Company of New Britain.  The factory is still in possession of heirs of H. S. Bartholomew.


  1. Bristol, Connecticut (in the olden times New Cambridge) which includes Forestville. Published by City Printing Company, 1907

  2. Record of the Bartholomew Family by George Wells Bartholomew, Jr. - 1885

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