- Standard View
Christian Bear Sr. arrived in 1809 to run a plantation for his father-in-law and to establish a cabinet making craft.
In 1812, or possibly earlier, he built a log wood working mill, or took over operations of an existing log mill.
The log frame mill was torn down in 1908 and the present structure was built on the same site using the same wooden wheel.
A steel wheel was purchased in 1927. This wheel was 10.5' in diameter and 4' wide, purchased from the Fitz Water Wheel Co.
After 3 years of work on the dam, head race, water wheel and a 15 horsepower engine, the mill was ready to go again in 2008.
The earlier log mill also served as a carding mill and fulling mill.
Christian Bear Jr. was the next operator, followed by his son Ephraim.
In 1829, Christian added a second mill, a 3 story brick mill that served as a grist mill.
The brick mill was torn down in 1926, and the bricks were used to build a new funeral home.
Part of the old foundation of the brick mill can still be seen.
Early in the 20th century the Bear Mill supplied electricity to the village of Churchville. The mill had been put out of commission in the 1990's by a flood.
The water power part is ready for the 1908 wood-working mill to again operate; however, Bill Bear is 83 years old and still involved with the funeral homebusiness.