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John Russell Cutlery Works, Turners Falls, Mass.

(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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John Russell made his fortune in the cotton industry, but saw new opportunities up North in the field of cutlery. In March of 1834 he established "Green River Works" in Greenfield, Massachusetts. Later renamed the John Russell Cutlery Works, this water-powered factory built in 1870 produced high quality cutlery. It initially employed local craftsmen, but as business got better and craftsmen became scarcer, John began to look overseas. By offering higher wages than could be found in their home land, he was able to lure highly skilled artisans away from Germany, Ireland and England and to Turners Falls. He then began to make high quality hunting knives to supply people moving out West. Because the railroad came right to his factory, he could make large quantities of goods and distribute them throughout the United States.


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