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Carver Industry History

Carver Redevelopment Authority is sponsoring zoning and general bylaw amendments to encourage private investment, beneficial economic development activity and revitalization of blighted and underutilized properties located between Routes 44 and 58. These zoning changes are a key part of a strategic planning process begun over 20-years ago.

Carver is a town in Plymouth County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 11,645 at the 2020 census. It is named for John Carver, the first governor of the Plymouth Colony. The town features two popular tourist attractions: Edaville USA theme park and King Richard's Faire, the largest and longest-running renaissance fair in New England.

History and overview

Archaeological research revealed 9,000 years of settlement at the Annasnappet Pond Site in Carver, from 10,000 to 1,000 years ago. The site contained 100,000 stone flakes, 1600 stone tools and a human burial.

Carver separated from Plympton, Massachusetts, and was incorporated in 1790 because many residents lived too far away to attend church in Plympton. The town was named for John Carver, the first Governor of the Plymouth Colony. Initially agricultural, Carver was known for the iron ore from its swamp lands used to make cooking tools by the 1730s. The first iron works was "Pope's Point Furnace", built in 1732, which operated for a century by using the bogs and Sampson's Pond. Over the next 150 years, sheep shearing and lumber mills were important in Carver.

Carver, MA has a rich, storied history of Industry witnessed as the Origins of New England's famous Cranberries...
to Old Forgery Furnace

In the early 1700’s a demand for “bog ore” (i.e. iron) resulted in a foundry being built just off Sampson’s Pond where a rich bed of this ore was found. In 1760, Bartlett Murdoch built his first furnace, Charlotte’s Furnace” on “little pond” (where Crane Brook stands today) on “Little Pond” on of the tributaries of Sampson’s Pond. It supposedly got its name from Queen Charlotte, wife of King Gorge II, ruler of England at the time. The Federal Furnace was established in 1793 on the site of

the saw mill.

In the War of 1812, The U.S.S. Constitution, “using heavy iron from Carver” defeated the Guerreire. The War of 1812 saw the foundry turning out cannonballs, then cook stoves, hollow ware, frames, grates, sinks, cauldrons  and farmer’s boilers that were shipped in large quantities to the West & Europe.

* Courtesy of Carver Public Library Files

to Chandler's Shoelace Factory...

Before the Civil War in 1812, William Franklin Jenkins and Company was founded for the manufacture of cotton goods. The "Shoestring Factory" was established on Crane Brook, the water privilege of White’s Mills.

In 1859, it assumed the name of the Jenkins Mfg. Co., of the Jenkins Braid Mill, but from the nature of its products, its name of the “Shoestring Factory” could not be erased from anyone’s mind.

In the first years of the operation of the firm, 1800 spindles were in motion, 50,000 pounds of cotton were consumed annually and 150,000 gross of shoe strings placed upon the market.

While shoestrings always took the lead in its manufactured, Cord and braid were made extensively. Plus, during the years that hoop skirts raged in the World of Fashion, the company did a thriving business, covering the whale-bone and steel that entered into the mechanism at the skirts. The average pay was $1.60 per day, and the work day consisted of 10 hrs. a day. They employed 100 people. The factory building was burnt in November 1880.

* Courtesy of Carver Public Library Files from Braddock Museum

to Carver Sand...

The Carver soil series was established in Plymouth County Massachusetts in 1911, and is named for the town of Carver where it was first described and mapped. There are over 110,000 acres of Carver soils mapped in New England, New York and New Jersey. Carver soils are very deep, excessively drained soils formed in layers of coarse and very coarse sand that contain less than 20 percent rock fragments, most of which are fine gravel. Carver soils are level to steep soils on pitted and dissected outwash plains and moraines.

For more information, visit

carver historic.jpg
Initial Proposed Development in Green District
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