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SDW strike


This great 8X10 photograph was recently donated to the Society by the granddaughter of Harold Summer Winslow, the photo’s original owner.  

It is identified as a picture of  “IPM [International Paper Makers] Strikers of Warren Paper Mills, Westbrook, Maine 1916.”  But one of the most interesting points of the photo is where it was taken… in front of the Brown Block in Cumberland Mills.   In 1916 the block, and the land around it, was owned by the S.D. Warren Co. and, according to the booklet A Presence in the Community, The Warren Family Legacy, it was reputed to be the oldest building in Cumberland Mills. 

In 1876 the S.D. Warren Mill established a library/reading room for its mill employees and their families. This Cumberland Mills Library, as it was then called, was housed in a single room above the Mill Agent’s office.  Because of its popularity and the increasing size of the book collection, the library was moved to the Brown Block , 479 Main Street, in 1908.  When this photograph was taken, there was no sign for the library because it was not opened to the general public until 1929. At that time its name was officially changed to the Warren Memorial Library.

At one time the three story Brown Building housed William and Walter Stevens’ Barber Shop on the 1st floor and the Red Men’s Hall and Saccarappa Grange on the 2nd.  Apartments were on both the 2nd and 3rd floors. A lodge room and storage area occupied part of the 3rd floor.

In 1933 the Warren Memorial Foundation purchased the building and the property for a public library. In the 1940s, due to increased library usage, a growing collection, and limited space, the library foundation undertook a study to improve the facilities.  As a result, the entire building was remodeled; the roof was lowered, eliminating the third story, and the library took over the entire first floor in 1949. 

the the early 2000s the building was lifted and moved back from Main Street, where it sits today.  The Warren Memorial Library has closed, but this building, well over 150 years old, still stands, and now serves as the home of the Northern New England Conference for the Seventh Day Adventists.

  References: A Presence in the Community, The Warren Family Legacy ; Library Collection notebooks, Then & Now Scrapbook.
Also see [this web site]:  People, Place & Events, Cumberland Mills Barber Shops (Stevens); Photo Archives: Paper City Lunch
All photographs and information taken from Westbrook Historical Society archives, unless otherwise noted.
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