The Davidson Rubber Plant used a short section of the Cocheco, from Rochester to Farmington and made automotive instrument panels and other products from the 1960s through 2001 until, under a different name, it filed for bankruptcy in 2005.
At its peak, around 1985-86, the plant employed about 1,200 workers and served the big three auto manufacturers — Chrysler, GM and Ford. At one point, 80 percent of production was shipped to the South and Mid-West by rail from the factory.
From Foster's Daily Democrat, a former employee stated:
"Then they went to Just-in-Time [inventory system], so we converted to 100 percent trucking. Trains involved a lot on manual labor, with trucks, they could just back up to the dock and be loaded by a forklift."
The plant was just south of Paulson Rd. North of Paulson Rd. the ROW is intact for a few miles until it merges with RT. 11 just south of the old Farmington station location. The Davidson Rubber Plant was right behind me in the photo below.
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