The Old Road Series - Plate VI
Date: March 1980
Edition Size: 1000 S/N
Issue Price: $25.00
Print Size: 17.5 x 22
THE OLD MILL, located on the east bank of the Little Pigeon River (West Prong) in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, was built in 1830.
Grinding is done on flint granite stones. Water from the Little Pigeon turns the 24-foot breast wheel and two old tub wheels to furnish power. Yellow poplar logs 14" x 14" square and 40 feet long rest on pillars of river rocks to support the structure. The interior is hand-hewn hemlock and oak held together with hickory pegs. Floors are heart pine put down with rectangular iron nails. The exterior is yellow poplar weather boarding.
During the War Between the States, looms were kept on the second floor and weaving was done for the soldiers. An old iron forge, for which the town was named, was a thriving business when the mill’s extension was erected by its side. By 1885 the forge was dismantled and taken to Kentucky and a water-powered saw mill was built. In 1900 the saw mill was moved and a large grain room added. Electricity for the town was generated in the mill until 1930.
The Old Mill stands today, creating one of the most nostalgic scenes in all the Smokies. With the beautiful Little Pigeon River at its side, majestic Mount LeConte towers in the background sending her streams down the lush mountain to the river; to make the power, to turn to stones, and to grind the grain.
A wonderful Old Mill Restaurant now stands next to The Old Mill. Operated for many years by the Kirkus family The Old Mill is listed in the National Registry of Historic Places.