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The "Silver Lake Mill" at the Delaware Agricultural Museum

The Delaware Agricultural Museum is a private, non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation of the agricultural heritage of Delaware and the Delmarva Peninsula. The Museum is located on the west side of Route 13 in Dover, between North State Street and College Road. Donated building from sites all over Delaware and even Maryland have been moved to the grounds to form a replica of a typical mid-19th century village. The structures include a farmhouse and out-buildings, a blacksmith shop, a country store, a railroad station, a schoolhouse, a small church and even a barber shop. The village is called “Loockerman Landing.”

Beginning in 1980, the president of the new museum, Mr. Edward F. “Eddie” Evans, supervised construction of a timber framed mill. It was designed, not as a copy of any particular mill, but rather a replication of how many old mills were built and how the various pieces of equipment worked in relationship to each other. As I mentioned in my last posting, after the "Medford Mill" at Mud Mill Pond closed its doors in the early 1980s, the Medford family donated most of the equipment in their mill to the Delaware Agricultural Museum. The donation included millstones and roller mills and all the related equipment.

In addition to a grist mill, the “Silver Lake Mill” also contains a reciprocating sawmill, and it is all set-up to be powered by water that is first pumped out of Silver Lake into the “mill-pond,” and then is released through the millrace, across the overshot waterwheel, and back into Silver Lake. I actually got to see the sawmill operate when it was first installed back in the mid 1980s. However, the water pump uses a great deal of electricity and at the present time the Ag. Museum does not operate the mill.

"Silver Lake Mill" at the Delaware Agricultural Museum

Two sets of 48" Millstones

One of the three Wolf Company Roller Mills

Wolf Co. IMPERIAL Gyratory Receiving Seperator

MONARCH Corn Cracking & Grading Outfit

Flour Bolter (Sifter) upstairs

Seven Elevators

Friction Flour Sack Packer

Reciprocating Sawmill

Reciprocating Sawmill

Saw Blade

Reciprocating Sawmill

"Silver Lake Mill," from behind

Next week we'll learn about William Shakespeare's "Dover Mill."

(Not THAT William Shakespeare)

I'll bet you didn't know: Train Station and the Country Store at the Ag Museum both came from my hometown of Woodside. The Train Station was built when the railroad went through, about 1856, but was replaced a few years later by a larger brick station. The first one was then moved about half a mile from the RR tracks and turned into a tenant farmhouse.

The brick RR station at Woodside ca 1907 - Delaware Public Archives


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