Former Factory of [Walter] Baker's Chocolate - Lower Mills (Boston), MA, USA
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member NorStar
N 42° 16.300 W 071° 04.082
19T E 329457 N 4682010
Quick Description: The buildings, now most filled as residential units, once was where the Walter Baker Chocolate Company produced it's world-famous chocolate.
Location: Massachusetts, United States
Date Posted: 2/22/2009 8:09:00 AM
Waymark Code: WM5WV1
Published By: Groundspeak Regular Member woolsox
Views: 2

Long Description:
You can buy Baker's Chocolate in the supermarket. You might have thought that this semi-sweet chocolate was simply labeled to be used as baking chocolate. However, before the name became a brand name of General Foods, now part of Kraft Foods, it was the name for a company that was once world-recognized, and its chocolate was made in the Lower Mills village in Boston and Milton.

Chocolate activity started in the area in 1765 with John Hannon, who started making chocolate in a mill owned by Daniel Vose, a business owner in the Lower Mills area. This operation stopped in 1779, but James Baker started his operating in the village in 1780 and eventually absorbed Hannon's former operations. The family business continued to grow. Walter Baker took over the business in 1823 and made it into a nationally recognized name when it went with California prospectors during the gold rush. His step-nephew, William Henry Pierce, took over the operations in 1853 and made it into a world recognized name. Pierce introduced the icon of "La Belle Chocolatiere." When Pierce died, there were no heirs to take on the company, so the company was incorporated. In 1927, Postum Cereals, now General Foods, acquired the company. In 1962, General Foods moved the operations to a new plant in Dover, Delaware, and by 1965, chocolate manufacturing ceased to exist at this location.

Most or all of the buildings still exist. They are massive brick structures on either side of Adams Street, straddling the Neponset River which was the original source of power to the mill. Five buildings over five stories tall dominate the village. The most interesting of these is the Pierce Mill, which is right at the corner of Adams Street, Dorchester Avenue, and Washington Street. There is a sign at its base that welcomes people to the Lower Mills Village, and features the "La Belle Chocolatiere," icon. On an archway is "The Baker Chocolate Factory."

The Baker Dam is located between two of the large buildings on the west side of Adams Street. It is a beautiful location to contemplate the sweetness of the chocolate that was produced from within these walls by the hundreds of people who used to work here.

Additional Sources:

Dorchester Atheneum:

(visit link)

Bostonhistory.com:

(visit link)
Product manufactured here: Baker's Chocolate

Address:
Pierce Square
Boston, MA United States
02124


Web Page: [Web Link]

Visit Instructions:
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