On Winsted & Winchester

Wiremaking in Winsted

Early Winsted grocery stores

Gilbert A. Hart Grocery & Crockery, located in a building that later became Moore & Alvord Realty on 690 Main St., was typical of many of Winsted’s early grocery stores. The business was named after its proprietor, who was active in civic affairs, it carried basic and specialty food items, fresh produce was displayed in wooden bushel baskets or crates, white-aproned clerks served customers, deliveries were made in horse-drawn wagons, and it was a “cash grocery,” i.e. no credit was extended to customers. 

Hardware and plating

The making of hardware and plating was a hugely successful industry in Winsted. In addition to the large manufacturers, several noteworthy smaller concerns included Markham & Strong, a brass works founded in 1866, and Puritan Manufacturing, which was purchased T.C. Richard’s Hardware. 

Axles & Springs

Reuben Cook, who had clerked for Solomon Rockwell Brothers, established an iron forge on the Still River, around 1840, with his sons Charles and John R. Cook. In 1852, it was organized as the Cook Axle Company. Reuben lived on North Main Street near the shop. 

Cutlery making in Winsted

The making of cutlery in Winsted began in 1852 with table cutlery and it later developed into pocket knives. Most knife makers were English immigrants who brought their fine skills to this country with them.  These businesses were very successful for years.

Eagle Works

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Pin manufacturing: a profitable buisness

The making of pins was a very profitable business for Winsted. New England Pin Company and Union Pin were world leaders in the production of hair pins, pyramid pins, and pins that were used by clothing manufacturers. 

Early Winsted tool makers

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