Monday - Saturday
Open Daily, except for major holidays
Nearby, free parking
Heritage Winooski, sponsored by Saint Michael's College, is a cooperative effort of merchants, educators, and historians to examine the industrial and cultural heritage of Winooski and Vermont during the nineteenth and twentieth century mill era with programs and exhibits. Partners are the Champlain Mill, Chace Mill, Woolen Mill, Winooski One Hydroelectric Plant, Winooski City Hall, Winooski Schools, Winooski Historical Society
and community members.
Saint Michael's Collgee intern, Melissa Duval, conducting a school tour, Fall 1998.
Photo courtesy Lollie Krawitt, Director
Heritage Winooski offers school tours, an internship program, gallery talks and teachers' workshops. College student interns have developed riverside walking tours, a guide to historical Winooski, a school tour and this website. Gallery talks on mill topics occur in the fall and spring. Soon to be published will be an illustrated collection of essays and oral histories about the Winooski Falls mill era, and Mill Museum-related school curriculum materials. Heritage Winooski also publishes a newsletter, "Mill Run," in fall and spring.
The Heritage Winooski Mill Museum opened in July 1998 as a "work-in-progress" exhibition in a donated gallery and hall space of the Champlain Mill, one of the former textile mills which now also houses shops, restaurants, and offices. A highlight of the hall exhibits is a large panorama of the Winooski Falls mill complex, c.1920, by Louis McAllister. There are also sequential maps of the mills site, 1840-1993. Future hall panels will in include the Yankee and immigrant workforce as well as transportation.
The gallery overlooks the Winooski River. The Chace Mill and some remnants of it's waterpower technology are in full view. Gallery exhibits already installed are: River & Mills with a working power transfer model, The 1927 Flood, Wool Textile Manufacture, At Work in the Mill with photographs by James Detore and others, a huge power loom and short video, "From Wool to Cloth." Additions will include working conditions, child labor featuring Louis Hine photographs in Vermont, and mill products in peace and war. Section labels are in both French and English.
The Mill Museum has generated an enthusiastic response from the community. Former mill workers and family members have donated tools, photographs and other artifacts. They have also shared anecdotes of mill life. Teachers have also welcomed this new resource.
School Tours: Learning about the power of the looms.
Photo courtesy of Lollie Krawitt, Director
Major support has come from the Champlain Mill, Chace Mills, Woolen Mill, Winooski One Hydroelectric Plant, Winooski Community Partnership, Pecor Family Foundation, Vermont Council on the Humanities under a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), Lake Champlain Basin Program, Oakland Foundation, Florence Gould Foundation, Merchants Bank and Wiemann-Lamphere Architects. Donations, payable to Heritage Winooski, are welcome.
Exhibit illustrations are courtesy of Winooski Historical Society; Vermont History Society; Special Collections, University of Vermont Libraries; Fletcher Free Library, Burlington; and former mill workers and their families.
Please direct inquiries to:
Laura Krawitt, Director
Saint Michael's College
Colchester, VT 05439