Bethlehem Silk Mill
July – August, 2016
A crew of four experts from Empire Services demolished part of the Bethlehem Silk Mill, which had been damaged by fire a decade ago. The buildings, which had become an eyesore in the historic neighborhood, were demolished to create space to build new student housing for nearby Moravian College. The crew, working for Boiler Construction, utilized a John Deere 450 95-foot long reach excavator (see photos below), and a 290 excavator to load materials. The Empire crew, led by supervisor Troy Sweigert, salvaged all wood and timber for the owner of the property.
The Bethlehem Silk Mill, the largest silk mill in Pennsylvania, was originally constructed in 1886 and made of red brick with a stone foundation. The factory, which created military parachutes, closed in 1952. The plans for the new apartment complex include several five-story structures housing 89 apartments.