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Manufacturers Index - Newton & Thompson
Last Modified: Feb 6 2020 2:30PM by Jeff_Joslin
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In 1849 Edward S. Thompson began manufacturing lathe-turned match-boxes. In 1856 he partnered with Alexander S. Newton and Benomi Howard to found Howard, Newton & Co., which manufactured match-boxes and pill-boxes. In 1866 Howard left the partnership, which then became Newton & Thompson and then in 1897 it became the Newton & Thompson Manufacturing Co.

None of the above would normally be of interest us at the Vintage Machinery website. But in 1857, Alexander S. Newton patented an automatic lathe specialized for making turned boxes and thread spools, and by 1870, Newton & Thompson were manufacturing the lathe as a sideline to their main business of pill-boxes, match-boxes and spools.

From 1870 Symonds, Wentworth & Co.'s Vermont State Business Directory Vermont State Directory and Gazetteer

The Newton & Thompson Manufacturing Co. remained in business until the 1980s. We do not know when they stopped making the lathe.

Information Sources

  • We learned of this maker due to an owwm.org forum post by RRobert Bernstein. Bob's post provides interesting background on the Waymoth and Wilder lathes, two competitors to the Newton lathe.
  • 1860 Sampson, Murdock & Co.'s New England Business Directory lists Howard, Newton & Co. as a maker of pill boxes.
  • 1860 W. W. Atwater's Vermont Directory and Commercial Almanac lists Howard, Newton & Co. as a maker of "pill boxes, matches, &c."
  • 1886 book, History of Rutland County Vermont.
    The only industry of importance now carried on at Forestdale [neighborhood of Brandon] is the woodturning establishment of the NEWTON & THOMPSON Manufacturing Company. The business of which this company is the exponent, was originated in Maine in 1849 by Edward C. THOMPSON, who made match-boxes. In 1856 Alexander S. NEWTON began the same business at Forestdale. The present company was incorporated in August, 1885, and has the following officers: Alexander S. NEWTON, president; Charles H. BUMP, vice-president; Edward C. THOMPSON, secretary; Lewis J. FORTIER, treasurer. It is successor to the firm of NEWTON & THOMPSON, which bought out the original firm of HOWARD, NEWTON & Co. a number of years ago. They now employ from seventy=five to one hundred hands.
  • 1899 Book of Biographies of Rutland County provided much of the history provided here, although it does not mention that Thompson had been in the pill-box business since 1848.