The Farrel industrial and commercial buildings in downtown Ansonia, CT, have seen better days. Talks have been underway to redevelop the properties. One developer proposes to replace the former Farrel Process Lab with apartments and retail stores. That’s why I decided to swing by Ansonia – with camera in hand – to capture this slice of the New England city’s manufacturing history before it disappears.
The Farrel foundry got its start by making sugar mills for the cane sugar industry in 1870, according to Derby Historical Society’s “Images of America: Ansonia.” During the Civil War and World War I, the plant manufactured arms and ordnance. It produced propulsion gears for warships and hydraulic presses for airplane parts in World War II. Today, from the street, a visitor can see the hulking metal and brick building, a reminder of the city’s industrial past.