Scenic USA - New Jersey
Clinton Red Mill
|Photo by Alan Hartmann ©
Alan's Skylands Photography
Inset photos by the History Girl
Kelly's History Girl Site
Entrepreneur Ralph Hunt completed the finishing touches on his Hunterdon County woolen mill in 1810. The mill seat here in Clinton was perched along a branch of the Rattan River. The dammed up river, located in northwestern New Jersey, provided the mill with a steady flow of raw power, feeding an undershot wheel from the millrace. Although the mill put the town’s people to work, Hunt's enterprise proved unprofitable over the years. Hunt eventually defaulted on his loan and lost all the family's property on both sides of the river. A string of subsequent owners, branching out into numerous mill operations, continued to struggle to prove the mill a success. Businesses varied from milling flour to grinding graphite and talc. The mill was also used to produce electricity, powering mill equipment and Clinton's street lamps. Hunterdon County records may hold a complete list of mill owners, but at least a dozen names are mentioned throughout the mill's history.
Today, the Red Mill Museum Village occupies the site were Spruce Run joins the Raritan River. This peaceful area is the perfect place for the museum's special events and programs. Along with concerts and week-long music-fests, the mill itself offers a collection of 40,000 agricultural and industrial artifacts. After three years of restoration and site maintenance, the Clinton Historical Museum opened the museum to the public in 1964. The ten acre village site includes a general store, blacksmith shop, a replica log cabin, quarry stone crusher, and the quarry office. The Bunker Hill School House, dating back to 1860, was moved on site in 1974. Like many 19th century schools, the one room housed local students from first to eighth grade. Painted an eye-catching red, the mill museum is a popular historic stop on the I-78 corridor.
Red Mill-Copyright © Alan B. Hartmann~All rights reserved.
Nearby Points of Interest
Copyright © 2012-15 Benjamin Prepelka
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