Slater's Mark: Samuel Slater and the Founding of Webster  


The Legacy of Samuel Slater

Samuel Slater died three years later on April 20, 1835. Control of Slater & Sons passed to George, John, and Horatio Nelson Slater. John Slater, Websterís first representative in the Massachusetts General Court, died of tuberculosis in 1837 and George, one of the first selectman of Webster, died in 1843, leaving full control of their fatherís company to their brother, Horatio Nelson. Horatio would run the company until his own death in 1888, when his son, Horatio Nelson Slater, Jr., would take control. The death of Horatio Nelson Jr. in 1899 ultimately ended Slater involvement in Webster. In 1936, the Old Green Mill, which had burned down and been rebuilt in 1878, was bought by Cranston Print Works, along with the accompanying water rights to Webster Lake. Today, the mill complex is still owned and operated by Cranston Print Works, which prints, finishes, and merchandises cloth to both private industry and the general public.

Samuel Slater ObeliskWhile Slater lies buried in Mt. Zion Cemetery along with many of his descendants, there are still signs of Slaterís influence in the area. The most prominent, of course, is Webster Ė the town which he pushed to be founded. Connecting the East and North Villages is Slater Street, along which one can find many millworkers' houses. Across from Cranston Print Works is a monument to Samuel Slater erected by his great grandchildren in 1967. And lastly, the original clock tower of the Old Green Mill still stands at the site of the Green Mill and still marks the passage of time.

I now invite you to take a tour of the many Slater sites in Webster.

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© 2003: John Carter. All Rights Reserved.