Saturday, October 19th, tours every 30 minutes from 11:00 to 3:00 at Camp Middlesex, 1032 Erickson Rd.
From the earliest days residents of Ashby used water powered mills to produce products. The largest concentration of mills was in the vicinity of Valley Road. 4H Camp Middlesex has generously permitted a public tour of the mill buildings on their property. These are the last remaining mill buildings in Ashby.
You'll learn about Loveland mill which includes the water powered grist mill, saw mill and the water turbine that generated the first electric power in Ashby. From there you'll go to the Lawrence mill site. This is the site of the earliest mill in the area and overlooks "the gorge", a scenic water fall on Willard Brook. In this area is evidence of a canal that directed water from Willard Brook across Valley Road to help power Carr's mill.
Carr's mill was the largest mill in the valley and at one time employed over 30 workmen. It's site is marked by a large stone dam. Finally, at the end of the paved road is Wilder's mill. The mill building is gone but the remains of the dam and the brick steam house can still be seen.
The tour is free of charge. Donations to Camp Middlesex and Ashby Historical Society are welcome. The tour starts at the grist mill at 1031 Erickson Road. There are two parking areas near the grist mill. See map below. No parking is permitted on Erickson Road. This is private property. Please stay in desgnated areas.
Access to the water turbine involves a steep descent. Access to the Lawrence mill site involves a woodland trail. Appropriate footwear is needed. The rest of the tour is on level ground or roads. The complete tour will take 1 - 1 1/2 hours.