S.D. Warren Company in Westbrook is Maine's oldest paper mill, first opened in 1854. Warren was known for having the highest quality publication papers in the world, particularly coated publication paper used in glossy company annual reports and magazines. Innovation was key to Warren's long term success, thanks to its "Technology Center" which performed product and process research and developments. The mill always produced a great number of specialty products. The focus of the interviews is the business and labor history of the mill. Warren was famous for one the nation's longest and most successful paternalistic traditions, which kept the company union-free until 1967. Workers and managers alike recall generous employment terms, and a company based social safety net that took care of injured, sick, and financially troubled employees, often thanks to direct appeals by employees to the mill manager. The company was purchased by Scott Paper Company in 1967, and was sold again to South African Pulp and Paper Industries (SAPPI) in 1995. Many interviews deal with the suddenly contentious relations between the new union locals, especially United Paperworkers' International Union Local 1069, the largest union local in the mill. Interviewees also paint a detailed picture of the difficult conditions of paper mill work life - heat, danger, exhausting shift work, abusive treatment by supervisors and favoritism by managers in work assignments. Workers stress the important role of their skills in the company's success, and their overall pride in working for Warren. Two other themes of interest to economists and historians: (1) the traumatic experience of the mill's precipitous decline after 1985 (employment fell from a peak of 3200 in 1966, to 2200 in the late 1980s, and then heavy cuts that left the mill with only 200 employees in 2003); the role of community memory in dealing with the mill's demise, centered on filiopietistic recollections about Samuel Dennis Warren, the mill's founder.

Follow

Interviews from 2014

File

Interview with Paul Brahms, Michael Hillard

Interviews from 2013

Interview with Tommy Lestage, Michael G. Hillard

Interviews from 2011

File

Interview with Peter Kellman (2), Michael G. Hillard

Interviews from 2003

File

Interview of Bill Sterritt, Michael Hillard

Interview with Carl Turner, Michael Hillard

Interview with Dana Babb, Michael Hillard

Interview with Dave Martin, Michael Hillard

PDF

Interview with Dave Martin & Arthur Gordon, Michael Hillard

PDF

Interview with Gary Cook, Michael Hillard

Interview with Harlie Lord, Michael Hillard

PDF

Interview with Jane Slaughter, Michael Hillard

PDF

Interview with John Beck, Michael Hillard

Interview with John Wilbur, Michael Hillard

PDF

Interview with Karl Dornish, Michael Hillard

Interview with Margaret Lowell, Michael Hillard

Interview with Oscar Fick, Michael Hillard

Interview with Patrick Peoples, Michael Hillard

PDF

Interview with Peter Kellman, Michael Hillard

PDF

Interview with Ray Pineau, Michael Hillard

Interview with Rodney Hiltz, Michael Hillard

Interview with Roland Sampson, Michael Hillard

Interview with Ute Lestage, Michael Hillard

Interview with Michael Hamil, Michael G. Hillard

Interviews from 2002

PDF

Interview with Clyde Harriman, Michael Hillard

PDF

Interview with Gary Schauzer, Michael Hillard

PDF

Interview with Harry Foote, Michael Hillard

PDF

Interview with Joe Jensen, Michael Hillard

PDF

Interview with Robert Burton, Michael Hillard

Interview with Steven Page, Michael Hillard

Interviews from 2001

PDF

Interview with Curtis Pease, Michael Hillard

Interview with Dan Parks, Michael Hillard

Interview with Frank Jewitt, Michael Hillard

Interview with Howard Parkhurst, Michael Hillard

Interview with Patricia Gaudet, Michael Hillard

Interview with Paul Drinan, Michael Hillard

Interview with Phil Lestage, Michael Hillard

Interview with Ron Rondeau, Michael Hillard

PDF

Interview with Ron Usher, Michael Hillard

Interview with Howard Reiche, Michael G. Hillard

Interviews from 2000

File

Interview with Arthur Gordon, Michael Hillard

PDF

Interview with Arthur Gordon, Michael Hillard

PDF

Interview with Barry Kenney, Michael Hillard

Interview with Bob Dorr, Michael Hillard

Interview with Cheryle Kimball, Michael Hillard

Interview with Chris Murray, Michael Hillard

Interview with Jack Jensen, Michael Hillard

Interview with Marv Ewing, Michael Hillard

Interview with Shirley Lally, Michael Hillard

Interview with Shirley Lally, Michael Hillard

Interview with Thomas "Tommy" Lestage, Michael Hillard

Interview with Tommy Lestage, Michael Hillard

Interview with Tommy Lestage, Michael Hillard

Interview with Tommy Lestage, Michael Hillard

Interviews from 1998

Big Talk: Radio Interview, Michael Hillard