Tremont Nail Company anniversary

Oct 21, 2019

The Tremont Nail Company, the oldest manufacturer of steel-cut nails, celebrated its 200th anniversary on Monday.

Guests gathered at the Methodist Meeting House to see presented documents, artifacts, photographs, and displays associated with the company’s history. 

President of the Wareham Historical Society Angela Dunham spent more than ten hours setting up the exhibitions. 

Guests also watched a documentary film made by WCTV about Tremont Nail, the oldest nail manufacturing company in the country. 

Among the guests was Gary Franklin, a 5th generation Tremont Nail Company nailer who also dedicated his time to gathering artifacts for the museum. 

“[Making nails] is something that I found out I was pretty good at so I just kind of stuck with it,” said Franklin. He said that the company still uses a lot of the original machinery as it did when it first opened 200 years ago. 

The factory was established in 1819 by Parker Mills on the site of the old cotton mill, which had been partially burned by the British during the War of 1812. Originally known as Parker Mills Nail Company, it was later named as the Tremont Nail Company. 

Reconstruction was completed in 1848 and the buildings haven't changed much since. The bell in the cupola in the original facility bears a date of 1851 and has called to work and to rest over six generations of workers. Until the 1920s, the mill was powered by a water wheel that powered the overhead shafting. 

The town of Wareham bought the site using Community Preservation Act funds in 2004. The company moved to Mansfield, Massachusetts in 2006 after it was acquired by Acorn Manufacturing. 

For more information about the Historical Society, go to, the society’s Facebook page, titled The Wareham Historical Society, or call Angela M. Dunham, WHS President, 508-295-8578.