1898 Historic Flour Mill

Brief History of the 1898 Flour Mill


The Smoky Valley Roller Mill was built in 1898. Unlike a grist mill which uses stones, a roller mill uses a series of corrugated rollers to grind grain. This type of mill, known as "the grand daddy of the modern mill" became important in this area with the introduction of hard winter wheat in 1870s. The mill operated as a business until1955, shipping flour across the U.S. and Europe.

The mill was originally water powered, utilizing turbines in the river. In the 1930s, the dam washed out. Fortunately, though, by this time, the owners of the mill had already installed electric power.

It took four to six people to operate the mill. At times it ran 24 hours a day. It processed 30-35 bushels of wheat per hour, which yielded 1260 to 1470 pounds of flour per hour.

Efforts to restore the mill to operating condition began in the 1960s and were completed in 1981. The National Register of Historic Places added the mill to their roster in 1972.

Check out the Mill History Timeline