In the second and third quarters of the nineteenth century the local economy in Pembroke was centered around the streams and rivers in town.
At the upper falls, Lemuel T. Reynolds and Lewis L. Wadsworth built the Little Falls gang-saw, lathe, and shingle mill as well as a cooper shop in 1859. The lumber produced at the mill was transported to the Iron Works wharf to be shipped to New York. Reynolds became the sole owner of the operation. In 1869 the operation was forced to shut down due to the Saxby Gale and forest fires.
A salt works was established in the early 1830's by Jonathan Bartlett and General Ezekiel Foster. Bartlett had operated a salt works in Eastport. The Pembroke Salt Works refined salt that was imported from Pembroke, Wales. The table salt and butter salt produced was known for its high quality. Like many other industries in the area, the salt works was forced to close due to the cost of importing the raw materials needed and then shipping the finished product to the markets.
Grist mills ground home-grown grains for local markets. These mills depended on the rivers, streams, and powerful tides to fuel them.
Native clay was used in several brick yards in the town. The products produced were taken to regional markets.
The Pembroke Iron Works produced 5,000 tons of manufactured products annually and employed up to 300 workers when it was running at its peak. The company owned houses, a mansion and a fleet of ships.
Shipbuilding seemed to come naturally to the area, with sheltered waters so close to settlements. When the industry was at its peak there were seven shipyards in Pembroke. These produced over one hundred ships over about five decades.
The Sardine Industry also had a great impact on Pembroke and the surrounding communities. The first factory was built in 1885 in Pembroke and the last factory was closed in 1963.
There has been great changes to the Population of Pembroke of the Years. As can be seen in the snap shot of population data from the US Census.