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Methuen's Magical History Tour
Item 22 of 22

This factory was part of the Tenney family's wealth.


In 1846, there were four houses on Charles Street, none of which remain. Of the existing houses on the south side of the street, all but two date from the 1860s and 1870s. On the north side, the four story Tenney & Company shoe factory was built in 1868 during a period of post-Civil War expansion by brothers George W. and Daniel W. Tenney, who formed Tenney and Co.in 1865. They worked in a small shop on Hampshire Street until 1868 when their new, four-story factory building with "French roof" at 2 Charles Street was completed. According to the 1885 Sanborn Insurance map, the first floor was used for sole cutting, the second for upper cutting, the third for stitching and dressing and the fourth for buttoning. The Tenney brothers continued together in business until their retirement in 1888, after which the building was sold to other manufacturing interests.

Daniel W. Tenney and George W. Tenney, born 1832 and 1835 respectively in Salem, New Hampshire, were sons of John Tenney and Hannah Woodbury. Daniel lived at the corner of Broadway and Pleasant Street and George directly across the street. George's house was built in 1892; Daniel's, which was designed by Haverhill architect C. W. Damon, in 1879. Brothers J. Milton Tenney and Charles H. Tenney were in the hat business, C. H. Tenney and Company, beginning in 1869. - Description courtesy of Dan Gagnon, historian.