BY ALAN J. FREEDMANThe merits of consolidation, outsourcing, globalization, and other economic realignments have long been debated. One indisputable result of transferring production offshore has been that a number of U.S. manufacturing facilities have been vacated. While some factories will remain idle until they are renovated for a new use, many will remain vacant until they collapse, burn, or are razed. Communities are left with an increased fire hazard and reduced tax revenues to finance fire protection and other municipal services.HISTORY OF THE MILLThe Beacon Manufacturing Company was originally located in New Bedford, Massachusetts. In 1925, the company began operating on former fa...

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