Milton History

a pictorial history of Milton, PA

Edward E. Ritter Machine Shop

Edward E. Ritter Foundry, Machine Shop & Auto Manufacturer - 434 Arch Street

This building was at the corner of Second and Arch Streets. The view is toward the southwest, with Second Street to the right of the building. It was the site of the Joseph Sassaman Foundry and Machine Shop prior to the fire of 1880. The map of 1901 shows it as the E. F. Colvin Machine Shop & Foundry.

From the book “Milton, Pennsylvania, the 19th Century Town on Limestone Run” by Homer F. Folk: Edward E. Ritter was first the proprietor of a bicycle shop on north Front Street. The steel frames for his cars were made at 519 Lincoln Street by blacksmith Abraham Bowman, who later owned the Nash dealership on north Front Street, just above Fifth Street. Unsuccessful at making autos, Ritter sold Jackson automobiles, made in Jackson, MI from 1903 - 1932.

The building was next converted to the Dakin Knitting Mill, which made ladies silk stockings. John Dakin patented a ladies lisle stocking called Queen Anne's Lace, made from a smooth, tightly twisted cotton thread that was fine, hard and extra strong. Dakin lived in the mill house at 54 Second Street. The house can be seen in the first picture, behind the mill. After his death in 1933, the mill was operated by his son-in-law, former superintendent Walter L. Bolens until it closed around 1940. To see a picture of the Dakin family, click here.

Dakin Knitting Mill

Dakin Knitting Mill in 1922 - 434 Arch Street