A Link To History
Timothy's restaurant is proud to be located on Newark's oldest industrial site. This 233-acre tract was purchased by Samuel Johnson in 1715; 61 years before the declaration of independence was signed! Along with his son, Samuel erected grist and saw mills here next to the White Clay Creek.
The mill’s owners were influential in the naming of nearby roads. When Edward Miles purchased the building in 1758 the local road was called Miller’s Lane. Isaac Tyson was the miller in 1811 when he had the Methodist chapel built on the way to downtown Newark, leading locals to rename the road “Chapel Street”.
In 1845 the mills were purchased by Joseph Dean, a wool cloth manufacturer, and for a period of time, this area was the leading producer of Civil War uniforms for the union army. However, a fire on Christmas morning of 1886 completely destroyed these mills.
In 1859 Thomas Taylor, an English chemist, patented a process for manufacturing vulcanized fibre and through assignees, came to Wilmington and formed the Vulcanized Fibre Company in 1875. Three years later Caesar A. Rodney became President of the company.
John Pilling, Samuel J. Wright, John Quigley and others purchased the fire-ravaged mill in 1884. They used the old walls of the mill to build the American Hard Fibre Company and a a after a few mergers this plant became known as the Vulcanized Fibre Company in 1922. At this time vulcanized fibre was in high demand and they supplied domestic and foreign markets with the product creating profits that the originators thought impossible.
Vulcanized fibre is still widely used in electrical insulation today. Many of today's luxuries are due to vulcanized fibre as it is used in appliances, shoes, gaskets, washers and many other applications. In 1946 over 50 million pounds of these products were produced and almost every industry depends upon its production.