Scenic USA - Utah

Nielsen Grist Mill

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Nielsen Grist Mill - Bicknell, UT

Photos by Ben Prepelka
Scenic USA Artist Website

     Although low humidity is tough on skin, vintage cars and old wooden buildings seems to love the dry air and seem to survive much better in the Great Plain states. Here in Wayne County, Utah, the 120 year old Nielsen Grist Mill survives to this day. One of 20 mills in the state, the Nielson Mill is the only one to retain its original water-powered equipment.
     Closed in 1935, the mill was rediscovered lately, but in desperate need of repair. The two and a half story mill house, dating back to 1890, is currently being restored by the Steely family and members of the Intermountain Chapter of SPOON.
     Originally built by Danish miller Hans Peter Neilson sometime after 1883, Nielsen Grist Mill Entrance the new mill destroyed by fire. Undaunted, the mill was quickly rebuilt over its sandstone foundation. The mill was then remodeled in 1910, and all 16 elevators, reels, dust collector, water-powered turbine, wooden pulleys and drive belts remain to this day. Even the cash register has survived.
     Located at the foot of Thousand Lake Mountain, the mill building was constructed with hand-hewn beams and fastened with wooden pegs. Fed by water diverted from the Fremont River, the wooden flume guides water into a turbine, turning the huge Buhr grindstone. Following a post and beam design and supported with hand-hewn timbers, the mill is recognized for its historic value. The Nielsen Mill was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1975.

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