The Makers of the Mold

A History of Newton Upper Falls, Massachusetts


Kenneth W. Newcomb

A story of men and their machines in the Industrial Revolution at Newton Upper Falls, Massachusetts
And a history of its People

"Dreamers drew the pattern,
Workers cast the mold."


Dedicated to ROBERT (BOB) McLAUGHLIN (1881-1970)

Who planted the seed.

Left to right: Robert McLaughlin, Mayor Howard Whitmore, Ken Newcomb

Left to right are Robert McLaughlin, Mayor Howard Whitmore, and author Ken Newcomb

Table of Contents

  1. Southeasterly view of Newton Upper Falls from the Methodist Church steeple, c. 1870Historical
  2. Industry
  3. Streets, Bridges, and Parks
  4. Old Houses and Buildings
  5. Public Service Buildings
  6. The People
  7. Merchants
  8. Churches
  9. Schools
  10. The Social Scene
  11. Village Life
  12. Fire and Police Departments
  13. Transportation
  14. Athletics
  15. Utilities
  16. Remembrance - A Present of the Past
  17. Biographies, etc.
  18. Conclusion
  19. Bibliography

A Note from the Web Publisher, The Friends of Hemlock Gorge: The Friends are extremely pleased to publish this electronic, Internet Edition of an important, but never printed, history of the village that grew up next to Hemlock Gorge. The process of digitizing Ken's typescript and priceless images began during the winter of 1997 and completed in October, 1998. The Internet publication project was conceived by Dr. John Mordes who directed the editorial effort. He was given unfailing assistance by Hank Lysaght, Bobbie Demers, and Brian Yates. Please send comments and corrections to the Friends of Hemlock Gorge.

Important announcement to fans of the book: Thanks to the effors of Jerry Reilly, printed paperback copies of The Makers of the Mold are now available from the the friends of Hemlock Gorge and for your Kindle at To purchase a printed copy, contact Jerry at [email protected] .

On Thursday, November 19, 1998 the City of Newton, Massachusetts became the new and permanent publisher of Makers of the Mold. Its library took possession of an original typescript and will eventually host the book on its web site. The Friends thank Mayor David Cohen and the citizens of Newton for their support of this publication. The Friends' photo album of this memorable night is available here.

Author Ken Newcomb passed away at the age of 93 on Monday, September 23, 2002

The Friends of Hemlock Gorge thank his many readers whose letters in response to his book enlivened his later years.

Kenneth Ward Newcomb

Of Newton Upper Falls, formerly of Needham, a native born Newtonian, community activist and noted local historian of Newton Upper Falls died September 23 at the age of 93. Husband of the late Martha (Royles) & Eva (Blois) Loving father of Robert B. Newcomb of Auburn. Brother of William D. Newcomb of Needham, Albert L. Newcomb of Norwood & the late Frederick Newcomb. Also survived by 4 grandchildren & 10 great-grandchildren. Funeral Services at the First United Methodist Church of Newton (corner of Chestnut St. & Summer) Newton Upper Falls on Thursday, September 26 at 10 a.m. Relatives & friends are kindly invited. Visiting hours at the Eaton Funeral Home, 1351 Highland Ave., NEEDHAM on Wednesday from 4-8 pm. Interment Newton Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials in Kenneth's memory may be made to friends of Hemlock Gorge c/o Brian Yates, 1094 Chestnut St., Newton MA 02464. Late author of "Makers of the Mold", Recipient of the Unsung Hero Award, Appreciation Cert ificate both from Newton and Recognition Award from the Commonwealth of Mass for his outstanding contribution to the documentation of the History of Newton. Founder of NUF Improvement Assn. Pioneer member of Newton Historical Commission & longtime trustee of the First United Methodist Church of Newton.
Published in the Boston Globe on 9/24/2002.

Copyright 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 Kenneth .Newcomb and The Friends of Hemlock Gorge. All rights reserved. This page last modified on January 20, 2006. Since Ken passed away, the Friends have made only minor corrections and added a couple of new photos to his text.

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