Photograph By John Murray

   Smoke stacks and church steeples are two of the three pillars that symbolize Waterbury’s 340 year rise from a treeless meadow into an industrial force that rocked the world. The third pillar, and the most important, were the hundreds of thousands of immigrants that filled the church pews and poured into the city to fuel the production of brass, clocks, and during WWII, bullets. The image above captured the waning light of an Autumn sunset on a decaying smoke stack from the Benedict & Burnham Manufacturing Company, which in 1843 was the first brass factory in Waterbury to incorporate. The buildings – now referred to as the Anamet site – are scheduled for demolition as the city aggressively seeks to get the property remediated to invite future economic development. The Waterbury greenway is tentatively planned to hug the east shore of the Naugatuck River, and when completed in the next decade, will provide recreational opportunities to the citizens of greater Waterbury right on top of where this smoke stack now stands. The church in the background is Shrine of Saint Anne For Mothers and when it was completed in 1922 it was a French Canadian ethnic parish.