The Wilkinson Mill, situated on the west bank of the Blackstone River in Pawtucket, was built between 1810 and 1811 by machinist Oziel Wilkinson. Constructed in stone rubble, three and one-half stories high, the mill played a critical role in the history of textile technology, in steam power generation, and in the development of the machine tools industry. The Wilkinson family came to Pawtucket in the 1780s and set up a shop to forge anchors, build presses for oil works, and mold iron screws used in paper pressing machinery.
This compressor was a product of the combined technology and design heritage of both the C. & G. Cooper Company of Mount Vernon and the Bessemer Gas Engine Company of Pennsylvania, which had merged in 1929. Ralph L. Boyer, the chief architect of the GMV, worked for Cooper-Bessemer from 1926 through 1965.