As the Company Prospered, So Did the Community.
In Every Way, Christian Dorflinger Fostered and Encouraged a Spirit of Civic Pride Throughout...
— The White Mills Community Trail —
White Mills grew rapidly during the 1870s and 1880s. Houses were built, churches established, and businesses formed. Two streets defined the limits of the factory east of the Lackawaxen River — Elizabeth Street, named for the wife of Christian Dorflinger, and Charles Street, named for his oldest son. With the factory at its center, the community developed along the old plank road leading from Honesdale to Hawley. Many Dorflinger workers owned their own homes along this route. Three hotels in the area supplied commercial requirements, two churches provided for religious needs, while an opera house and other fraternal buildings offered the opportunity for recreation.
[Photo captions, from left to right, read]
Main Street in White Mills looking toward Honesdale. The White Mills Opera House, built in 1897 and used for many years for traveling shows, is the building with the long windows in the foreground on the left. Many of these houses still look the same along modern-day Route 6.
A view of White Mills from across the Lackawaxen River. The Hotel Lafayette, formally opened to the public in 1897, is in the
Main Street looking east toward Gill's Hotel (later the White Mills Hotel) and the Lower Blowing House. The tallest chimney stack in the far right was for the gas plant, built to supply gas to the factory. In it, bituminous coal was heated in enclosed ovens. As the heated coal released gas, it was captured and piped to the factory where it was used to melt glass. It was also piped to some homes for lighting and provided gas for a few streetlights.
The cornerstone for St. Joseph's Roman Catholic Church (left photo) was laid on July 28, 1878. It was built on land donated by Christian Dorflinger. It was destroyed by fire in 1960, and a new church was built on the same site. The Methodist Church (right photo) was built in 1890.
Erected by Dorflinger-Suydam Wildlife Sanctuary, Lackawanna Heritage Valley, DCNR, Lackawanna Wonderful, and National Park Service.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Industry & Commerce • Settlements & Settlers. A significant historical year for this entry is 1897.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Dorflinger: America's Finest Glass... (within shouting distance of this marker); When Christian Dorflinger Melded His Art with History... (within shouting distance of this marker); Skills Passed Down through Generations... (within shouting distance of this marker); There Was More to White Mills than Glass (within shouting distance of this marker); From Alsace, France to White Mills... (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Dorflinger Glass Works (about 300 feet away); Watching Over Their Livelihood and Their Homes (about 300 feet away); The Canal and the Rails Spark the Growth of White Mills... (about 300 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in White Mills.
Also see . . .
1. Dorflinger Factory Museum. (Submitted on June 4, 2017, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
2. White Mills Community Trail may open in fall (2008 Wayne Independent article). (Submitted on June 4, 2017, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
Credits. This page was last revised on June 4, 2017. It was originally submitted on June 4, 2017, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 201 times since then and 50 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on June 4, 2017, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.