In 1839, the Sanderson Mill, which had been leased to Mr. Joshua Ayers, was purchased by Dr. Jonathan Ware. The next year he demolished the mill, that occupied that piece of property for over a century and a quarter, and built a new one with two reaction wheels. The lower building became a storehouse and later a stable.
In the beginning the mill was leased to various tennants for the purpose of sawing and turning. Later “a grist-mill was attached to one of the wheels and a chocolate mill to the other.” (1) Josiah Webb and Josiah F. Twombly began the manufacture of chocolate in 1843, and continued there for seven years. In 1850, the Dorcester Cotton and Iron Company built a mill for them upstream. They purchased this mill in 1855.
Dr. Wares’ home in Milton was near his chocolate mill, which was in production from 1843 to 1881 . The house was later owned by H. Clifford Gallagher, the president of Baker Chocolate. It was demolished in 1892 for Baker’s circular storage warehouses.
“The Webb Mill was built in 1882 at the corner of Adams and Eliot Streets on the Milton side of the Nesponset River, named for the Webb Chocolate Company. It was one of three former competitors of Baker’s to be purchased and incorporated into Walter Baker and Company. Preston’s, Webb’s (formerly Webb and Twonbly), and Ware Chocolate Companies all produced chocolate in the Lower Mills in the mid-nineteenth century, so that the Lower Mill earned the appellation ‘Chocolate Village.’ ” (2)
Today Ware’s Mill has been turned into 3 luxury townhomes, which are for sale. You can find the particulars at www.residencesatmiltonvillage.com/residences.html
Sources: (1) History of the Town of Dorchester, Massachusetts, by Drochester Antiquarian and Historical Society and Ebenezer Clapp, 1859, Reprinted from the New England Historical and Genealogical Register for October, 1890, page 617.
(2) Milton by Anthony Mitchell Sammarco, by Arcadia Publishing, Charleston, SC, Chicago, IL, Portsmouth, NH and San Francisco, CA, 2004, page 42.