1819 - Leaky Beaver Creek Dam & Old Guilford Grist Mill ©


by J.R. Beatty

BEAVER CREEK POND's LEAKY DAM
BEAVER CREEK POND's LEAKY DAM

Like an African explorer I slowly pushed my way through the surrounding trees, bushes, vines, and thorns towards the 1819 Beaver Creek Dam. I had seen it in the distance from the Old Guilford Mill located near Greensboro, NC.

At last I saw the dam up close - holding back the pond water while some overflow liquids splashed down to the creek below to flow past the mill further downstream to the East. I hoped there wasn't a permanent leak in the dike as it appeared! This rustic scene was well worth my epic struggle to get there. (Click on photos)

The original Old Guilford Mill and Beaver Creek Dam were founded in 1767. Then "On February 10, 1781, during the Revolutionary War, British troops under General Cornwallis marched past the mill in pursuit of General Greene who was encamped at Guilford Courthouse. Legend has it that British troops seized the mill to grind grain for the soldiers prior to the Battle of Guilford Courthouse on March 15, 1781."

In 1819 the mill and dam were moved to their present locations 500 feet downstream. The old dam was constructed of rough hewn rocks. It was anchored by larger piles of stone on each side and buttressed by two angled, rock braces in front.


Old Guilford Grist Mill Water Wheel
Old Guilford Grist Mill Water Wheel

The mill is a quaint, three-story, stone and wood building located alongside Beaver Creek. It supports the large red, water driven, mill wheel and the grinding mill systems inside.

For some more detailed history, go to the website http://oldmillofguilford.com/history/


Old Guilford Grist Mill
Old Guilford Grist Mill

The attached, newer, two-story, building was built to be the Mill's sales office. Red roofs complete both structures' ambiance.

The mill wheel still operates as needed making stone ground foods. Favorites for sale in the Mill Store are various flours, country grits, muffins, and buckwheat pancake batters - to name just a few.

This historical and peaceful stop sits alongside the two-lane road (NC Hwy 68 North) between Greensboro and Eden, NC. It is especially nice on a cool Autumn's day. Come and see this special "grinding history" preserved!