An early morning fire at the old Somersville mill, completely destroyed what was left of the building. Residents watched the mill as well as their memories go up in flames.
Only a metal skeleton remains of Somersville Mill on Maple Street in Somers after fire on Saturday morning.
On Monday, officials from the fire department said it is suspicious and have deemed it arson.
The mill that spun fabric until 1969 and fire and police crews responded to the scene around 2:19 a.m. Crews from across the state and Massachusetts responded as well to assist.
For many Somers residents, this mill fire marked the end of an era.
“When I was a kid, me and my dad and the family, five kids used to come down in a ’54 Chevy pickup, sitting in the back of it, looking at the mill and my dad would tell me everything that was going on around here,” Larry Boulay, of Somers, said. “It’s a landmark. It’s a shame, I wish they would’ve done something with the building.”
“It is sad. A lot of peoples’ lives had been here – generations -- now to find it’s not there anymore. It kind of hurts a lot of people. A lot of stories,” Sheila Okraska, of Somers, said.
The cause of the fire of still under investigation.
Somers fire chief, Gary Schiessl, said on Sunday that the fire was out, but the department was focused on on hot spots.
“The amount of debris in the mill has been pretty well controlled and the water has been pretty well controlled,” Schiessl said.
This fire came about six months after a fire at the Somers Congregational Church, another historic building.
“We already had the church on the center of Somers, and now we have this. All of our historical things that the town has been made up of, and now all of a sudden It seems to be dissipating,” Okraska said.
The town had already invested thousands of dollars in infrastructure nearby. Now with the mill gone, Lisa Pellegrini, first select woman of Somers, sees a greener future.
“I think what would be really nice, because of the location, would be some type of park. It would be wonderful,“ she said.
Fire officials said that the mill has been abandoned for quite some time. No injuries have been reported.
Power was shut off on Maple Street and areas surrounding the mill as a precaution.