The banks of the Hudson River north and south of Albany, as well as the Mohawk and other nearby rivers, were dotted with paper mills in the 1890s. Practically all of the paper manufactured in the U.S. was made within a few hundred miles of Albany, and the forests of the Adirondacks resounded with the echoes of the woodsman's axe and falling timber. It is no wonder that there grew up in the Albany area an industry to supply the burgeoning paper industry.
In 1895, three Albany businessmen--Parker Corning, Selden Marvin and James Cox--with capital of $40,000 formed the Albany Felt Company to manufacture papermaking felts, today called paper machine clothing. A fourth--Duncan Fuller--was the acknowledged master feltmaker.
Parker Corning Duncan Fuller Selden Marvin James W. Cox, Jr.
1874-1943 1865-1913 1835-1899 1859-1935
Vice President Superintendent Secretary President & Teasurer
The new company came into the world on March 8, 1895, and the first order of business was to set up a factory; that was accomplished with the rental of 1-19 Thatcher Street plus $20,000 worth of equipment. Seven looms were in operation by the early summer. The new
plant was operated by 23 full-time and 13 part-time workers, both men
and women; full-time wages ranged from $6 to $18 per week.
By 1901, with sales increasing to $114,000 from $27,000 in 1896, it became clear that the little mill on Thatcher Street in Albany was inadequate for the needs of the future.
In 1902, the Company moved to the site that would be its principal home until 2011 - the plant on Broadway on the boundary line between the City of Albany and the Village of Menands.