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CYRUS: Milltown, as seen by Keith Marcum 35 years ago

Milltown started out as just a little town with a big mill operation
By Keith Marcum
Story first published September 11, 1971
and rediscovered by Cyrus, 2005

The town of Milltown is located about sixmiles West of Columbia just off Highway 61.

Milltown got its name from the large mill thatstood there at that time.

The mill was owned by the Townsend familyand they were the people that built it. TheTownsends ran the mill for several years andMrs. James Mahoney and William Davisbought part interest in it.

Mr. N.S. Mercer bought the mill

The mill was finally sold to Mr. N.S. Mercerand remained in the Mercer family untiloperations stopped.

Besides grinding of corn and wheat, the millhad a cotton gin and a carding machine.

The cotton gin was used to separate the seedsfrom the cotton, and the carding machine wasused to straighten the wool of sheep and turnit into long threads that could be used in themaking of clothes.

Flutter wheel produced up-and-down motion at sawmill

Another interesting feature of the mill was thesawmill. The first saw that was used was a sawblade that resembled a cross cut blade. It wasoperated by a flutter wheel that produced anup and down motion.

The last type of saw to be used was thecircular type. It was run by a turban wheel thatwas set several feet in rock, with a channelthat ran water over the wheel. The turbanwheel weighed approximately 8000 pounds.

Canoes hued of large poplar trees

A boom was built across the mill pond to holdlogs that were brought down the river to besawed into lumber. Canoes were hued out ofsome large poplar trees, and the men thatfollowed the timber down the river used thecanoes.

People used to come from miles around to thisthriving town. There were lots of people thatbrought food with them in order to stay allday.

The town had besides a mill, several otherbusinesses. They had a drug store, abarbershop, and three large general stores.

Tutts owned one store; J.T. Mercer the other

One of the stores was owned by J.T Mercerand another was owned by J.R. Tutt and sons.The store that was owned by Mr. Tutt wasalso the post office. The store is still inoperation. It's owned by A.W. Ashbrook andis still the Milltown Post Office.

A union church is built

The church that overlooks the town wasorganized in 1831, and was a union church.The land was donated by the Townsend familywith the understanding that it would be aunion church, The people of the communitybuilt the church and it became a Union Baptistand Methodist.

By 1895 four faiths shared church

Years later in 1895 the Christian andPresbyterian was also established. Eachdifferent religious group had a Sunday toworship.

The second story of the church was used as aMasons meeting lodge and the importantbusiness was discussed there.

Milltown isn't the thriving community that itonce was but it is still a good place to livebecause of the friendly people and peaceful,sleep atmosphere.

You can almost hear the sounds of yesteryear

As one visits the little town, you can almosthear the muffled roar of the water that turnedthe huge grinding wheels and the hum of thesaw that ran here so many years ago.

Local history found by
Central Ohio Bureau Chief,

Keith Marcum is the brother of Linda Waggener. He's from Sulphur Well, Metcalfe County, KY, but now lives in Harrison County, IN. He still writes, but not as often as we'd wish. He first ran this story in the September 11, 1971 Green River Sprite. It was rediscovered by Cyrus.

This story was posted on 2005-12-22 04:47:10
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