Auger Dye


Charles I. Auger and Charles Simon from 1887 to 1909 were among the most highly regarded and successful silk dyers in Paterson. Auger, the son of Philadelphia silk manufacturer, moved to Paterson in 1884 to open a silk dye works at Clay and Huron Street. In 1886, he was joined by Charles Simon, a French immigrant and son of a dyer, who had learned the highly skilled dyer's trade in the dye houses of France, Germany and Switzerland. Simon was also Auger's brother-in-law, having married Auger's sister Mary the same year that the two formed a partnership. In the fall of 1886, Auger & Simon purchased a lot at the northwest corner of 5th and Branch Streets in the Bunker Hill section of Paterson. This previously undeveloped lot was advantageous location for a dye works because of its proximity to the Passaic River, from which the works initially drew its water. Auger & Simon officially incorporated in 1890 with Auger as President and Simon as Secretary. By the late 1890s, the Auguer & Simon plant was among the largest dye works in Paterson, and Auger and Simon were becoming more heavily involved in the social and political life of the city with membership in business associations including the Hamilton Club. Auger was considered a leader and spokesman for the city's dyeing industry and played a leading role in the formation of the Paterson Silk Dyer's Association and the Silk Dyers' Association of America. Auger was credited as resisting the attempts of financiers to take over his works and others in the city as part of a conglomeration in the early 1900s, but he himself soon led in the formation of the National Silk Dyeing Company in 1908, a conglomeration that merged the operations of five of Paterson's leading dye works. Thereafter, the former Auger & Simon works was known officially as the East Fifth Street Works of the National Silk Dyeing Company. The company entered bankruptcy in the 1930s, and the East Fifth Street Works was eventually acquired by the Gralch Realty Company, which subdivided and leased the property. In 1950, three textile finishing firms, specializing in rayon, occupied parts of the plant including Paterson Textile Printers, Inc., Grant Fabrics Finishing Co. Inc., and National Textile Printers, Inc.

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Hyde, E. B. Atlas of Passaic County, New Jersey, 1877.

Robinson, E. Atlas of the City of Paterson, New Jersey, 1884.

Robinson, E. Atlas of the City of Paterson and Haledon, New Jersey, 1899.

Mueller, A. H. Atlas of the City of Paterson, New Jersey, 1915.

Sanborn Map Company Insurance, Maps of Paterson, New Jersey, 1931.

Shriner, Charles A, Paterson, New Jersey. It's Advantages for Manufacturing, etc, 1890.

The Paterson Daily and Weekly Guardian, City of Paterson, N.J., Illustrations and Sketches, etc. 1898.

Heusser, Albert H. The History of the Silk Dyeing Industry in the United States, 1927.

Sanborn Map Company Insurance, Maps of Paterson, New Jersey, 1899.

Associated Documents

Auger & Simon Silk Dye Works Site Form