08/16/10 - Yates Mill
I took the kids to Yates Mill yesterday to walk around the mill pond. It's a short trail that's in the shade, but you would have thought I asked Joey to walk across the desert:-) Well, it was 93 and high humidity and not comfortable out but livable in the shade. We went to the right around the pond putting this magnificent view near the end of the trail. And, they were giving a mill tour, so as I was taking this shot, the wheel was moving. Johnny had come to me all excited to let me know he could hear that telltale sound of the wheel going round and round.
I guess I'm in love with the beautiful NC sky in this shot and the stillness of the pond water. The spillway wall runs lower bottom where the large rock is back over to the mill, and in August there is no water running over it. You may remember a video I shared much earlier in the year (still winter) of water rushing over the wall. I like this summertime view as busy as it is with all the lush green growth and the power lines in the area hidden from view by the leaf covered branches.
History of the mill from Wikipedia is at the end of these comments.
Looking forward to more hikes around the mill as we move into fall. Fall...PLEASE!
Thanks for your comments on the Mentos shot from yesterday. If you do it, I'd love to see a pic:-)
This is HDR with the original normally exposed shot here:
After the HDR, the wood just above and left of the wheel was a tad too light, so I grabbed that spot and darkened it slightly...much better. I tried 3 different versions of the HDR to produce without the light area but it was there no matter what.
I hope you all had a great weekend. I did. Wishing for another day.
Yates Mill, one of the oldest buildings in Wake County, is the region’s only surviving operable gristmill. For nearly 200 years the water-powered mill produced lumber, milled corn and wheat, and carded wool. The land on which the mill is situated was surveyed for Samuel Pearson in October 1756, and granted to him by the Earl of Granville, one of the North Carolina colony’s Lord Proprietors. The original mill was built around at that time. Pearson steadily increased his land holdings, and owned more than 600 acres (2.4 km2) at the time of his death in 1802. In 1819, accumulated debts forced Pearson’s son, Simon, to sell the mill and its surrounding acreage at a sheriff’s auction. William Boylan, a prominent Raleigh businessman and director of the State Bank, bought the property, and over the next 30 years modernized the mill several times, adding a sawmill in the 1840s.
In 1853 Thomas Briggs, John Primrose and James Penny acquired the mill. A decade later, in the midst of the Civil War, the partners sold the mill and surrounding 94 acres (380,000 m2) to Phares and Roxanna Yates, James Penny’s son-in-law and daughter. Penny’s involvement in the murder of a Mr. Franklin may have brought on the sale. According to legend, Franklin was a Northern sympathizer who Penny killed for not paying a $700 mill debt. In 1865, Franklin’s widow supposedly told Federal troops occupying Raleigh that her husband’s death was due to his support for the Union. The soldiers tried to burn the mill by setting fire to the entrance. Charred wooden beams today attest to the unsuccessful attempt.
Yates and his descendents operated the mill until 1948, when businessman A. E. Finley acquired the property. Finley constructed a retreat lodge by the millpond for the use of his family and employees. Due to lack of demand, however, the old mill was closed in 1953. Ten years later, North Carolina State University acquired the property, consolidating it into a larger tract to be used as an experimental farm. The mill was mainly used for storage until 1989, when Yates Mill Associates was formed to marshal its restoration. The mill narrowly escaped destruction in 1996, when rains unleashed by Hurricane Fran burst its 250-year-old stone dam. In 1996, Yates Mill Associates and Wake County Parks, Recreation and Open Space unveiled a public-private partnership to rehabilitate the dam and mill as part of a 574-acre (2.32 km2) historic and environmental park. Yates Mill is now a designated Raleigh Historic Landmark