The Continental Mill

About the Continental Mill

The Continental Mill is a cotton textile mill in Lewiston where many Franco-Americans worked after immigrating to Maine. In 1858, a smaller mill called the Porter Mill stood in the same place, but was bought in 1866 by the Continental Company which quickly expanded it. By 1895, the mill employed about 1,200 people who were largely French Canadian and made up the “Little Canada” neighborhood in the surrounding Lewiston area. The mill was designed in French Imperial, also known as Second Empire style, since its architecture comes from the era of Napoleon III’s second empire, and an Italian Renaissance architecture style. The French Imperial style can be seen in the mansard roof with its sharp pitch on all sides and dormers along the whole length. The towers also have French tops, each slightly different from the other. The Italian characteristics are in the high arches of the octagonal tower and the arched windows in the square tower. Today, the Continental Mill no longer functions as a textile mill and there are plans to turn portions of it into housing units.

Continental Mill Then and Now