Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Good ole folk music at Hagood Mill

Hagood Mill History

The Hagood Mill site may have been originally owned by William Jennings around 1773. Benjamin Hagood purchased the grist mill in 1823. The mill as it stands today was built by his son, James Hagood, about 1845. It was willed to John Hagood in 1865 and, on his death in 1879, it was willed to Ester Benson Hagood. Upon her death, it was willed to James Hagood in 1891. Following a line of heirs it was eventually conveyed to J. Bruce Hagood in 1958, and continued to run commercially until 1966. The grist mill and surrounding property was donated to the Pickens County Museum Commission in 1973.

The mill is located on Hagood Creek (formerly Jennings Creek) a tributary of the Twelve Mile River. The last dam site is 1650 feet from the mill. From there, the water from the creek was diverted to the mill by an earthen headrace (ditch). Today water is pumped from the creek up to the headrace. The last 80 feet of the race is made of wood.
The wooden water wheel is 20 feet in diameter by 4 feet wide, and produces 22 horsepower. The wheel and mechanical components were rebuilt in the mid-1970's using as many original parts as possible. Restoration work continued in the mid-1980's, and again in the mid-1990's. The ring gear is 18 feet in diameter, and the two granite millstones weigh about 1600 pounds each.
During most of it's life, the Hagood Mill was a busy center of commerce. The Products of Industry Census records Hagood Mill as having produced 2500 bushels of meal (140 000 pounds), and 200 bushels of flour (11 200 pounds) in the year 1870. 120 000 pounds of meal, and 20 000 pounds of feed were produced in 1880.
Hagood Mill was added to the National Registry of Historic Places in 1972, and is one of the oldest surviving grist mills still producing grain products in South Carolina.


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