Historical Commission

Dudley Municipal Complex

71 West Main Street • Room 207

Dudley, MA 01571

 Edward Bazinet, Chairman

Michael Branniff, Secretary

Louise Wieloch

                                Joseph Antos                                            

David Butler

Elaine Martin

Phone 508 949 8004

Fax 508 949 7115



April 12, 2011


Ms. Brona Simon SHPO & Executive Officer

Massachusetts Historical Commission

220 Morrissey Boulevard

Boston, Massachusetts 02125-3314


Dudley Historical Commission Supports Stevens Mills LLC’s Massachusetts Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit Application.


Dear Ms. Simon:


The Stevens Mills LLC tax credit application is an integral part to the effort to utilize Stevens Linen Mill in a new and meaningful role in our community.  The mill conversion would be valuable in creating and sustaining a renewed sense of community, conducive to a revitalized preservation agenda in our town.  This would realize a constituency that values its heritage or birthright at something closely approximating its true worth.  That appreciation elevates an aggregation of people to the status of a community in the fullest sense of the word.  This in itself is no small outcome.


On the Dudley Historical Commission website several quotations are prominent.  They get to the long and short of the obligations and duties of the latest generation.


October 7, 1865 Webster Times:

Henry Hale Stevens, 1818-1901.  Founder of Stevens Linen Works, Dudley, Massachusetts.

It is a narrow minded and shortsighted policy which provides only for the necessities and demands of the present moment,…….and that man is derelict in duty who councils or suffers a disregard for the wants of those who come after him.”


Congressman Charles Washburn at Dudley Common War Memorial Dedication, July 5, 1909.

“What has cost so much to achieve should call forth equal effort to preserve.” 


 The historic inventory of our community has suffered and is suffering an unceasing litany of loss.   It is apparent this community cannot sustain such losses and expect to fulfill this generation’s responsibility of stewardship with regard to our historic structures.  The Dudley Historical Commission has concluded that the successful conversion of the Stevens Linen Works complex into rehabilitated, viable, revenue and tax producing rental units ( 164 ), would be the most significant and far reaching individual preservation achievement attainable in this community in the foreseeable future.


  To be able to point to this endeavor, which measured by any commercial, municipal, or preservation criteria, would break new ground in this place and would reveal a powerful example of the utilization of our untapped historic resources to lay before the people.  Such an outcome would allow for an aggressive offence instead of always fighting our preservation issues at the perpetual disadvantage of the defense.  This mill conversion would be a showcase for the dazzling possibilities the Massachusetts Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit Program seeks to foster.  Its value is undeniable on any level.


We support this tax credit application as a crucial part of this mill conversion project and its almost limitless potential for good outcomes on multiple levels.  We regard it as an effective means with which to begin to slow or stop the accelerating extinction of our historic birthright with which this place is beset.  Our birthright is the only one we have.  It is given into the care to each generation to protect and preserve in trust for the unborn future.  It is hoped these efforts will help awaken the slumbering citizens of Dudley to realize and fulfill their duties and responsibilities to our common posterity with the same tenacity, fidelity, and sacrifice that have characterized the efforts of preceding generations.  It is upon this awakening that everything chiefly depends.  The Commission is grateful for the opportunity to endorse this tax credit application without qualification.  It is an integral part of the Stevens Mills LLC conversion plan; which we regard as the solitary bright star visible on our horizon at this time.


 The Dudley Historical Commission, at its April 12, 2011 monthly meeting, by unanimous vote, reaffirmed its continued support for Stevens Mills LLC’s Massachusetts Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit Application.


Thank you for your attention

Michael Branniff




Dudley Historical Commission











cc: Preservation Massachusetts

      Old City Hall

      45 School Street

      Boston, Ma. 02108                                                                                                                                                                         

      Attn; Erin D. A. Kelly



      National Trust for Historic Preservation Northeast Office

      7 Faneuil Hall Marketplace, 4th Floor

      Boston, Ma. 02109

      Attn:  Rebecca Williams