Town of Belmont, New Hampshire
Town of Belmont
New Hampshire
Town of Belmont, New Hampshire
Town of Belmont
New Hampshire

Belmont Mill

Also See Belmont Town Buildings and Facilities Committee

Mill - Staff


Belmont Mill - The Belmont Mill is a community-owned property, currently housing General Assisatnce and Penstock and Tioga meeting rooms on the 4th floor. Visit the Belmont Mill Services webpage for more information.





December, 2018

Belmont Mill Assessment & Repurposing

March, 2017



Voters opposed the demolition of the historic Belmont Mill building on March 16, but the fate of the four-story landmark remains unclear  Vote on Belmont Mill Fuels broader review of historic properties  

A bicyclist passes the historic Belmont Mill, where medical and senior services are located. A town committee will take up the charge of studying the building's potential as town offices. (David Carkhuff/Laconia Daily Sun)

Sun  3/25/17

January, 2017
Dollar-free Belmont Mill articles occupy Budget Committee  Daily Sun 1/13/17
Belmont voters will be polled on the future of the Belmont Mill Daily Sun 1/3/17

December 5, 2016
The Belmont Board of Selectmen held a public input session on Monday, December 5, 2016 at the Corner Meeting House to seek input on the Mill and its future specifically their intent to bring forward to the voters a warrant article to restore the masonry on the building.  Minutes

November 21, 2016
Belmont asks public's help: Keep the Belmont Mill or flatten it?  Daily Sun 11/25/16 

June 18, 2015
Draft Consultant Report Discussed

Mill building's future uncertain  Union Leader 7/8/15
Independent evaluation of Belmont Mill concludes building is "worth saving"   Daily Sun 7/1/15
How to save the Belmont Mill  Citizen 6/18/15

May 5, 2015
The Belmont Board of Selectmen held a public meeting on May 4th. Thank you to all of the people who attended and the comments and information you shared.  Information on this meeting as well as continuing news can be seen as it becomes available on this page.
70 residents answer call to discuss & debate future of Belmont Mill   Daily Sun 5/6/15
Appeal lost   Citizen 5/7/15

March 27, 2015

What's Next for the Belmont Mill?

The Belmont Board of Selectmen will hold a public meeting on Monday, May 4, 2015 beginning at 7:00 discuss "What’s Next for the Belmont Mill”. We look forward to seeing you there; your input on the Belmont Mill is important.  More... 
Future of Belmont Mill to be topic at Monday night meeting at BHS Daily Sun 5/1/15  

March 17, 2015
Selectmen's Meeting - Moving Forward
Frustrated selectman advocates tearing Belmont Mill down   Daily Sun 3/17/15
Belmont Mill's future at stake   Citizen 3/17/15

March 10, 2015 Town Meeting
Belmont voters to decide on mill renovation, SB2 status  Citizen 3/9/15

Ballot Question #3.  Shall the Town vote to raise and appropriate the sum of Three Million Three Hundred Fifty Seven Thousand Two Hundred and Fifty Dollars ($3,357,250) for the purpose of renovating the Belmont Mill for use as Town Offices, and to authorize the issuance of not more than $2,957,250 of bonds or notes in accordance with the provisions of the Municipal Finance Act (RSA 33) and to authorize the municipal officials to issue and negotiate such bonds or notes and to determine the rate of interest thereon; the balance of funding for the project ($400,000) to come from the Municipal Facilities Capital Reserve for which the Selectmen are agents to expend. A 3/5 ballot vote required. (The Budget Committee recommends $3,357,250 and the Board of Selectmen support this recommendation.) 

Belmont votes down mill renovation   Citizen 03/11/15
$3.4M Belmont Mill renovation attracts little support  Daily Sun 03/11/15
Belmont voters chose not to renovate historic mill  Union Leader 3/10/15

Yes - 164          
No - 467

February 3, 2015

Public Meeting Presentation

January 31, 3015

Town Meeting Deliberative Session
Photo: Ed Pierce/Citizen

Belmont Mill Renovation in Voters' Hands  Citizen 01/31/15 

Belmont Mill Conversion Plan Enjoys Broad Support at SB-2 Session  Sun 02/03/15 

Proposed Belmont Mill Renovations Spark Debate at Deliberative Session  WinniEcho 02/15/15 


January, 2015
Selectmen want voter opinion on mill  Citizen 1/6/15
Belmont Mill makes it to town warrant  Citizen 1/7/15

Belmont Board of Selectmen
Presentation on Renovation Proposal


Click on Floor Plans to Enlarge






Questions Aplenty Regarding Belmont Mill Reconstruction Costs   Citizen 1/19/15
Case Made for Belmont Mill Renovations   Citizen 1/21/15
Belmont Residents Question Bond Proposal to Fund $3.4-Million Mill Renovation   Daily Sun 1/22/15

December, 2014
Belmont Mill Worth Saving, Contractor Tells Selectmen  Daily Sun 12/9/14
Masonry Expert Says Belmont Mill Fire Damage is Fixable   Citizen 12/9/14
Tempers flare over Belmont Mill Citizen 12/30/14
Belmont Mill Renovation Project Would Cost $3.6 Million  Daily Sun 12/30/14

November 14, 2014
Building Envelope Specialists
Masonry Wall Construction Assessment at Belmont Mill

Looking through the bricks  Citizen 11/15/14

October, 2014
Engineer finds Belmont Mill to be in "good condition"  Citizen 10/16/14
Parking, Integrity of Mill Discussed at Meeting   Citizen 10/30/14
Masonry expert gets first look at Belmont Mill Citizen 10/31/14

September, 2014
Preparing Belmont Mill for Town Office Location Could Cost More Than $1 Million   Union Leader 9/24/14
Historians Want Belmont Mill Saved Again   Union Leader 9/3/14
Selectmen Discuss How to Pay for Belmont Mill Renovations   Citizen 9/19/14

August, 2014
Selectmen receive first cost estimate on Belmont Mill move Citizen 8/8/14
Belmont Selectmen discuss use of Belmont Mill Citizen 8/26/14

December, 2013
Belmont extends construction offer for Mill Citizen 12/2/13
Belmont Board of Selectmen - Selectmen's Minutes - 12/16/13

November 18, 2013
Belmont Board of Selectmen
Selectmen's Minutes

October 22, 2013
Bonnette, Page & Stone Corp and PortOne Architects
Statement of Qualifications for Architectural Services Relating to Belmont Municipal Facilities Project


October 1, 2013

Belmont Board of Selectmen
Request for Qualifications (RFQ) - Architectural Services for the Condeptual Design and Planning of the Belmont Municipal Facilities Project RFQ#13-01-MFP

July, 2013
Belmont municipal buildings in disrepair  Citizen 7/16/13

May 10, 2013

H.L. Turner Group, Inc
Belmont Mills Complex Structural & Mechanical Assessment


January, 2013
The Scott Lawson Group, Ltd
OSHA Pre-Renovation Lead Inspection - The Belmont Mill 1/31/12

LRCC culinary program forced to find new venue  Citizen 1/3/13
LRCC culinary program vacates Belmont Mill Daily Sun 1/9/13
Belmont Selectmen pull plug on $500K article  Daily Sun 1/9/13
Lead paint found at Belmont Mill Citizen 1/15/13

Selectmen told at least a portion of Belmont Mill 4th level flooring has rotted  Daily Sun
Selectmen approve $5,000 to find Mill dry rot solution  Citizen 12/19/12

In January of 2013 the Town faced structural and other issues with the Mill and began a two plus year investigation of the needs of the building and tenants. There resulted a repurposing proposal which intended to relocate the Town offices into the Mill.  That proposal was turned down by voters at the 2015 Town meeting. Background follows.

Belmont Mill News & Recognition


Belmont Mill added to state register of historic places

November 21, 2015 Citizen Photo & Content Michael Weiss - For 182 years, the Belmont Mill has been the heart and soul of commerce in Belmont and now it's drawing acclaim after having been been added to the New Hampshire State Register of Historic Places. The New Hampshire Division of Historical Resources announced earlier this week that the mill, built in 1833 and a key supplier to Belmont’s economy for much of the 20th century, has been added to its list of historic properties. The Belmont Mill is the third landmark in Belmont to be recognized by state or federal authorities and joins the Belmont Public Library and the Province Road Meeting House, said Linda Frawley, chair of the Belmont Heritage Commission. "Belmont’s put a great deal of effort and care into the revitalization of the village area,” said Candace Daigle, Belmont’s Town Planner. "This designation is an important factor in that.” Daigle praised the work of the Belmont Heritage Commission, which was founded in 2004, as having largely spearheaded the Belmont Mill’s renovation process. "The Heritage Commission is very active in village preservation,” said Daigle. According to the Heritage Commission’s website, Belmont NH Heritage (, the Belmont Mill is 80 feet long, 40 feet deep and is built on a granite foundation. It was constructed in 1833 by the Gilmanton Village Manufacturing Company, with the ownership of the mill changing periodically for decades while remaining open for business until 1970. "It’s certainly a building with a storied history,” said Frawley. In 1992, a fire broke out in the mill, causing what Frawley referred to as "a horrific mess.” State Register of Historic Places adds Belmont Mill. The Mill was acquired by the town of Belmont in 1995, where it was in danger of demolition, she said. However, thanks to the efforts of Belmont citizens, and in particular Wallace Rhodes, who is now the Town Historian Emeritus of Belmont, the mill was saved and restored, Frawley said. Since then, the Belmont Mill has received numerous awards from historical societies across New Hampshire, including a Preservation Award from the Victorian Society in America/New England Chapter, she said. Frawley quoted a New Hampshire historian named James Gavin, who spoke of the Belmont Mill as "a monument in the preservation history of New Hampshire.” Eileen Gilbert, director of the Belmont Public Library, called the Belmont Mill "a great piece of work that shows the dedication of the Belmont Heritage Commission.” A warrant article calling for its renovation was overwhelmingly defeated by Belmont voters in March. The proposal called for $3,357,250 to refurbish the mill building and moved town hall offices there. Of that money, $2,957,250 was to be raised through the issuing of bonds and another $400,000 would have come from the Municipal Facilities Capital Reserve.

November 18, 2015-Daily Sun

The Belmont Mill is one of seven properties statewide which have been added to the New Hampshire State Register of Historic Places. 

Built in the 1830s and a central economic fixture in Belmont well into the 20th century, the Belmont Mill is the only surviving building associated with the Gilmanton Village Manufacturing Company; it serves as a reminder of manufacturing's importance in the town's economic development. After a 1992 fire, community efforts to save the building resulted in a 1996-98 renovation. 

Its listing follows the initiative of the Belmont Heritage Commission, which culled research and records acquired by Town Historian Emeritus Wallace Rhodes over the years, the professional assistance of architectural historian Mae Williams, and approval of the Belmont Selectboard to include the municipally owned building on the State Register. 

For Belmont, it is the third landmark recognized by state or federal officials. The Province Road Meeting House owned by the Belmont Historical Society, with a recently rehabilitated exterior funded with support from the Land and Community Heritage Investment Program (LCHIP) was the first community landmark listed on the NH State Register in 2002. And the Belmont Public Library was distinguished with inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places in 1985. The Mill has been honored for preservation, rehabilitation and its 1998 adaptive reuse by the Victorian Society of America, New England Chapter among others. In 2011 the New Hampshire Preservation Alliance included the 1830s structure in its 25 "Milestone Preservation Projects" of a quarter century.
Historic properties added to state register   Union Leader 11/22/15
State Register of Historic Places adds Belmont Mill   Citizen 11/21/15
Belmont Mill added to state register of historic places   Daily Sun 11/18/15
NH adds three historic sites to state register   Concord Monitor 11/18/15
Libraries, 1-room schoolhouse, theater join historic places   Associated Press 11/18/15

July 8, 2015 - Mill Eligibility

Citizen-07/08/15 - The Belmont Mill could soon join the Province Road  Meeting House on the New Hampshire State Register of Historic Places.  Photo Tim Camarato
Belmont Mill eligible for State Register of Historic Places  Citizen 7/8/15


Town Unveils NH Historical Highway Marker for Mill

July 15, 2015 Town Officials unveiled New Hampshire Historical Highway Marker #0235 commemorating the efforts to save the Belmont Mill
Restoration of Belmont Mill effort chronicled on new state historical marker   Daily Sun 7/19/13
Saving the Belmont Mill   Citizen 
Belmont Mill "miracle commemorated with marker   Union Leader 7/26/13 



April 8, 2011  Belmont Mill Named one of 25 Milestone Projects in New Hampshire Preservation

The Historic Belmont Mill is among a distinguished list of 25 of New Hampshire's greatest preservation achievements of the past 25 years, unveiled April 8th by the NH Preservation Alliance (NHPA) at its 25th Anniversary Conference. "All 25 Milestone projects exemplify themes of leadership, creativity, tenacity, and community and economic benefit," according to Jennifer Goodman, NHPA Executive Director.


Belmont Mill gets preservation accolade Citizen 4/12/11

Belmont Mill on list of greatest NH preservation achievements of the last 25 years  Daily Sun 4/12/11

Belmont Mill Named one of 25 Milestone Projects in New Hampshire Preservation  Historical Society 



June 24, 2011  Victorian Society Honors Belmont Mill

An invitation from the Victorian Society in America to tell the Belmont Mill Story included the Society's presentation of their annual Preservation Award honoring the Belmont Mill

Belmont Mill Preservation Award by Victorian Society in America/New England Chapter Belmont Heritage Commission

The Belmont Mill Story: Lessons in Preservation & Stewardship  Belmont Heritage Commission  


Association of N.H. Historical Societies - Lifetime Achievement Award - Wallace Rhodes



Community Preservation Workshop

The Belmont Heritage Commission hosted a March Community Preservation Workshop in partnership with the N.H. Division of Historical Resources (DHR) and the New Hampshire Preservation Alliance.  Heritage Commission


AIA N.H. Chapter - Merit Award for Excellence in Architecture, Christopher P. Williams Architects

N.H. Preservation Alliance - Excellence, Rehabilitation & Adaptive Reuse, Town of Belmont

PlanNH - Merit Award for Excellence, Community Impact to Christopher P. Williams Architects

Home Builders and Remodelers Association of N.H. - Gold Award to Christopher P. Williams Architects

Home Builders and Remodelers Association of N.H. - Best in Show to Christopher P. Williams Architects


Belmont Town Report dedication - Wallace Rhodes

Greater Laconia Weirs Beach Chamber of Commerce - Golden Hammer Award, Institutional Category


New Hampshire Preservation Alliance - Wallace Rhodes for preservation

Belmont Mill Resurrection


Anniversary of Belmont Mill fire today  Citizen 8/14/12

Town marks 20th anniversary of mill fire and the restoration effort that followed  Citizen 8/10/12

Belmont celebrates iconic Mill  Union Leader 7/29/12


Mill Burned 1995 - StaffThe existing Belmont Mill facility, owned by the Town of Belmont, was the subject of the first Plan NH Charrette in 1996 to determine whether the Belmont Mill, ravaged by neglect and a massive 1992 fire, could be adapted for public reuse - or if the demolition already underway, should continue.





Mill Reconstructed - StaffThe effort proved an engaging epiphany, and in August 1998, the 1833 Mill was proudly rededicated. Journalist and local native Roger Amsden, termed it "The Miracle on Mill Street", and a NH Division of Historical Resources official said, "Belmont had regained the heart and soul of its town". Today's mill in the historical village stands as proof of the possibilities when visionary planning and community consensus are combined.  2010 Charrette

Below are news articles from 1995 through 1998 highlighting the process whereby citizens were successful in saving this historic icon.


Mill & Power House 1998 - Staff

The "Miracle on Mill Street"; Historic Belmont Building Saved by Townspeople 8/9/98 Union Leader

New Roof Slated for Historic Belmont Mill 12/17/97 Union Leader

Belmont Voters OK Restoration of Historic 163-Year-Old Mill 10/10/96 Union Leader

County Will Aid Belmont's Quest to Restore Mill 6/28/96 Union Leader

Belmont Encouraged to go Slow on Demolition of Mill Building 1/31/96 Union Leader

Belmont Voters Grant Mill Reprieve 11/8/95 Union Leader

Belmont Mill's Fate Will be Decided by Voters 10/20/95 Union Leader

Belmont Mill Repair Costs "Prohibitive" 10/14/95 Union Leader

Belmont Selectmen Want Old Mill Razed 9/29/95 Union Leader

Belmont Awaits Ruling on Mill Site Injunction 9/18/95 Union Leader

Belmont Mill Razing on Hold 9/14/95 Union Leader

Belmont Pursues Grant for Rehabilitation of Mill Complex 2/1/95 Union Leader


Power House 2001 - Staff

Power House Demolition 2001 - Staff

The original power house and stack were not damaged in the 1992 fire and were left intact during the Mill structure reconstruction.


In 2001, three years after the rededication of the Mill structure, the remaining power house and stack were demolished.


Reconstruction Team Meeting Reports

1997 Reports 01 - 08
1997-1998 Reports 09 - 13
1998 Reports 14 - 21

Belmont Mill Historic Operation

Gilmanton Dept of the Ipswich Mills - Staff

In 1833 William Badger, in association with others, organized the "Gilmanton Village Manufacturing Company" and the following year constructed the Mill complex for the purpose of spinning cotton and weaving cotton sheeting.  The mill stimulated the construction of a much enlarged village and proposered until 1852 when a flood resulted in severe monetary losses.  Governor Badger died a few months later and the mill was thereafter operated until 1909 by several owners without any particular success.  Reminiscences of a New Hampshire Town


In 1909 the mill was taken over by Ipswich Mills.  In 1921, after a period of decline for Ipswich, George and Walter Duffy purchased the plant and incorporated the firm known as Belmont Hosiery Company.  In the post World War II period numerous improvements were made in machinery.  In 1955 the plant was closed and sold at auction the following year.  In 1956 Fenwick Hosiery Company purchased the mill complex and as of 1969 still employed seventy employees.  Reminiscences of a New Hampshire Town


Timeline  The Belmont Mill Story: Lessons in Preservation & Stewardship

  • 1865 converted to hosiery by new owner Moses Sargent, Sr.
  • 1870 purchased by  Amos Lawrence
  • 1890 major renovation sincludingi bell tower construction
  • 1921 acquired by Belmont Hosiery Company, operating until 1955
  • 1970 Fenwick Hosiery Mills consolidated Belmont factory with Laconia
  • 1992 August 14th major fire