By Linda L. Rennie, Marlborough Historical Society
Marlborough – As we enter the month of Thanksgiving, the community of Marlborough has much to be grateful for. It has a rich history that has given the city a strong foundation to meet the needs of its citizens and to outreach to the surrounding areas.
In 1883, its water works project was completed. In 1885 the electric lights first turned on in the city. Thus the community began to progress. In 1887 post office delivery started. In keeping with progress, in 1889 the electric street trolley began operating. With the addition of sewage to the city, in 1891, industry began to grow.
The area began develop. The growing shoe industry invited many families to live in Marlborough. Thus in 1893 Marlborough Hospital first opened its doors on Hildreth Street. In 1895, schools such as St. Anne’s Academy and St. Anthony’s were built. The Pleasant Street Fire Station was erected.
In 1895, Main Street was paved and the downtown area began to unfold. The New High School opened on Main Street in 1898. With growth on Main Street, in 1899, the Corey Block was erected. Also adding to the progress in 1903, the first moving pictures at the Marlboro Theatre arrived. Main Street invited stores such as the first 5/10 store in 1910.
Besides the shoe industry Marlborough became a place for other businesses. In 1912, Koehler Manufacturing Company moved to Marlborough. In 1922, Marlborough Wire Goods opened. The Dennison Factory was erected on Maple Street in 1923. Thus the foundation of industry in the city was laid
With industry booming, the population began to grow and more services were needed. In 1909 the Main Street Fire and Police Station was dedicated. More schools were built, such as the Washington Street School (Freeman) in 1916. Financial institutions began to open such as St. Mary’s Credit Union in 1913. The population supported churches like St. Ann’s inaugurated 1919. The library was dedicated in 1904. There was even an airport that opened in 1929. And in 1922 the Marlborough Country club opened with nine holes. Thus we have the beginning of a flourishing community.
This Thanksgiving as many members of the community cheer at the Marlborough/Hudson football game, a rivalry that began in 1904, let us remember the strong roots and foundation that our forbearers worked for. In a world where many people have so much less and are not supported by their communities, we are truly blessed in Marlborough.