Barker's Creek Gristmill

  (Rabun Gap, Georgia)
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spring grinding

Spring usually brings a number of local farmers to the mill to swap stories and have a turn of corn ground into meal and grits.  We normally have seed for 12 or 13 heirloom varieties by this time of year.  This year we only have 5 varieties.  I sent 20# of seed of 4 different varieties to a mill in eastern North Carolina in the hope that he could find someone near there to grow some and to save the seed.  It has not rained all month and water at the mill is down and grinding is becoming slow.  I took two groups from school out, they were all in a 9th grade physics concepts class.  They seemed to really like the mill and had a good grasp with what was taking place. 

 
 

finding corn

It is getting harder and harder to find corn for the mill, especially the older heirloom varieties.  Two older gentlemen that have come to the mill for years passed away this fall and I have lost them as suppliers.  Most of the suppliers for the mill are now in their mid 70's or older.  I have only 4 people that I buy corn from that are younger than 50.  One is a teenage boy that I have convinced to grow Bloody Butcher for me.  I am looking for several hundred pounds of it as well as a source for about 10 tons of Keener corn.  The market is there, I just cannot find the farmers to grow for me. 

We will be sharpening the stones in the next couple of weeks. 

 
 

Christmas eve

We went out to the mill today.  The water was up and the weather was cloudy.  It was just starting to rain and the snow was mostly gone.  We are low on corn and hoping for more to come in in January.  I have a student at school that has some red corn that he will sell me to grind for mieal and grits.  It should be fun to try.  We have also started grinding rice flour.
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