The Blackstone River has provided power to Pawtucket for over 200 years. It is known as the birthplace of the industrial revolution in America. In 1793 Slater Mill became the first factory in America to produce cotton yarn with water powered machines.
Just below the Slater Mill sits the Bridge Mill power plant, built in 1896. Attached to the original plant are 2 newer 850 kilowatt generators that supply enough electricity to power 672 homes. A few months ago I had the opportunity to go inside the plant and then inside one of the turbines that had been shut down for maintenance. I had no idea the river was still producing such significant amount of power to our town.