Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 13

A Glimpse of
a Bygone Era

The paper machine was running black paper the day Paper360° visited.

THE ORDINARY CAN DO
THE EXTRAORDINARY
Schelling explains that there is nothing
extraordinary about the mill equipment.
Having come to Turners Falls after working
with a supplier, he says the most "remarkable thing is that nothing about the machine
is unique."
But this simplicity provides benefits, one
of which is flexibility. "One of the benefits of
an older machine is that it can produce a wide
range of basis weights."
The flexibility also allows experimentation with new technology and various fiber
treatments. The company considers it a welcome challenge to try something new. The
machine, a Rice Barton unit (110 in. maximum
trim) installed in 1939, features a Manchester
Machine headbox. A sign of the times from

that era: most of the papermaking machinery
was built locally.
Over the years the machine has gone
through various rebuilds/updates. It still
has table rolls and a conventional twin nip
press. Originally, the sizing and supercalendering were done offline, but by extending
the machine room, a Hunt & Moscrop size
press and soft nip calender stack were installed
online. A modern Chroma Logic color control system has helped optimize dye use and
color matching. Centrifugal cleaners have also
been added.
For the extensive range of papers it produces, proper stock prep is critical. Making it
more complicated are the various raw materials the mill purchases: conventional hardwood
and softwood pulp, and cotton rags and linters.
Turners Falls also makes grades with bamboo

The Chroma Logic color control system helps optimize dye use and color matching.

The history of Turners Falls Paper is a
fascinating web of interlocked stories that
traces the early roots of the American
paper industry in Massachusetts.
In 1839, Wells Southworth founded a
fine paper mill in West Springfield, MA.
It operated until a fire in 1870, then was
rebuilt and run until 2006 when Esleeck
Paper was acquired. Operations were
then transferred to Turners Falls and
the mill was shut.
Elsewhere, in the 1860s Byron Weston
founded Weston Paper in Dalton, MA.
Weston himself had worked on one of
the first fourdrinier paper machines in
New York and then at Smith Paper before
building his own mill. The Weston line
is still produced, now made by Turners
Falls after it purchased the line from
Crane in 2007-08.
Weston produced security and currency paper and made the first social
security cards in the US. To this day, as
one Turners Falls sales representative
says, if you were born in the US, bought
land, married, died, or served in the military, somewhere along the line, you would
have a paper trail from Byron Weston.
In 1898, the Marshall Paper Co. mill
was built in Turners Falls. For some
reason, it never made paper and in 1901
it was purchased by the Esleeck family
and started production as the Esleeck
Manufacturing Co.
Turners Falls itself was a hotbed of
industry in the late 18th century. Among
the businesses in the area were Russell
Cutlery; Montague Paper; the original
Turners Falls Paper mill, which burned
in the 1950s; and a textile mill.
The 20th century ushered in the era
of acquisition. First came the Weston
assets. Then, in 1996 Eaton Paper was
acquired. Eaton was a papermaker with
mills in western Massachusetts. Finally,
Esleeck Manufacturing was acquired in
2006. Today, it is the only mill of all the
aforementioned still operating.
The Southworth family still controls
the mill. Family member John Leness
is president and works from the Pacific
Northwest. The management team at the
mill consists of David Mika, CFO and treasurer; Rob Binnall, vice president, sales
and marketing; and Ken Schelling.
Paper360º MAY/JUNE 2017

13



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Paper360 - May/June 2017

Setpoint
Over the Wire
Leadership for a Changing Industry
An Ode to Small
The Graying of the Paper Industry
Suppliers Reach Out to Mill Leaders
Making a Difference: 2017 TAPPI/PIMA Awards
RISI’s Asian CEO of the Year
TAPPISAFE Offers Solid Benefits for Mills, Contractors
Reinventing Varkaus
Failure Isn’t Just an Option—It’s Unavoidable
Blower Technology Proves Its Worth
TAPPI Journal Summaries
Global Study: Most People Highly Value Paper and Print
The Changing World of OCC
TAPPI News
ASPI News
Index of Advertisers
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - intro
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - ebelly1
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - ebelly2
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - cover1
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - cover2
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 3
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 4
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 5
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - Setpoint
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 7
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - Over the Wire
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 9
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 10
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 11
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - An Ode to Small
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 13
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 14
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 15
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - The Graying of the Paper Industry
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 17
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - Suppliers Reach Out to Mill Leaders
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 19
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - Making a Difference: 2017 TAPPI/PIMA Awards
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 21
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 22
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 23
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 24
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 25
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 26
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 27
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - RISI’s Asian CEO of the Year
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 29
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 30
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 31
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - TAPPISAFE Offers Solid Benefits for Mills, Contractors
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 33
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - Reinventing Varkaus
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 35
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - Failure Isn’t Just an Option—It’s Unavoidable
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 37
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - Blower Technology Proves Its Worth
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 39
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - TAPPI Journal Summaries
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 41
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - Global Study: Most People Highly Value Paper and Print
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 43
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 44
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 45
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - The Changing World of OCC
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - 47
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - TAPPI News
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - ASPI News
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - Index of Advertisers
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - cover3
Paper360 - May/June 2017 - cover4
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