- Standard View
This current mill was built in 2009. Andrew Evans built the first mill here on the Patoka River in Jasper, Indiana in 1813-1817. Andrew Evans came here from Scott County, Kentucky. Here in Jasper, he built a gristmill. It had one level and an undershot water wheel.
The Enlow family, Joseph and Elander Enlow, purchased the mill and property. The Enlows built their home next to their mill. Their mill became a regional success in the early 1820s. It was later sold to J.A. & Wm Graham in 1840.
Francis Xavier & Alois Eckert from Pfaffenweiler, Germany came to Jasper and purchased the Enlow's Mill in 1847. They ran the mill until about 1865; when, Francis built a new three-story grist and flour mill. The original mill stood next to the new mill until it was torn down in 1870. Francis left his mill to his three sons, Conrad, Jacob and Andrew in 1871.
The Eckert Brothers increased the business and shipped flatboats full of barrels of flour down the Ohio and Mississippi River and ultimately, to New Orleans. It was in 1879 that the Eckert's started shipping their barrels of flour by train. By 1883 the Eckert's replaced their mill stones with roller mills.
With their new roller milling equipment they were producting 150 to 200 barrels of flour a day. By 1910, the youngest borther, Andrew Eckert had obtaining sole ownership of the mill. The mill continued making flour until 1930 when the mill closed.
The mill set silent until 1964 when a devastating flood consumed the town and destroyed the foundation of the mill. A few months later the mill was raised. Susequently, the mill property became a city park. Jasper City Mill is a new mill and was completed in 2009. The new mill is the third mill at this location; this one with two millers, Ron Brosmer and Randi Schroeder.
A devastating flood that took place in the 1930s flooded the basement of the mill and engulfed the wheelhouse, which collapsed under pressure. After the Eckert family ceased milling operations in the early 1930s, the building was leased by the Dubois County Farm Bureau Cooperative as a feed mill and warehouse. Electric light fixtures were also sold from an office in the building to aid in the early rural electrification of the county's many family farms.
A view of the mill thruogh the window; the mill was closed the day of the visit.
The Iron Bridge is highlighted here. The mill became a favorite subject of photographers after the turn of the century. This beautiful photograph was taken by Sprauer Studios of Jasper and was a favorite postcard image for many years. The father-son team of Alois and Albert Sprauer were responsible for the majority of the professional photographs taken in Jasper from the 1880s to the 1960s.
The iron bridge, which replaced the earlier wooden bridge, was erected in 1879. The wooden forebay, spanning over the dam and housing the horizontal turbine wheel, was built in 1880. Three years later the mill underwent extensive renovation which included expansion of the 3rd floor, installation of the new roller mill process, and a new brick chimney to enable steam power when water levels were low.
Possibly the Enlow brother's home across the 3rd Street from the current 2009 mill. The wooden dam was eventually replaced with a cut stone dam.
The new 2009 mill is built of poplar with the 24' wooden water wheel driving belts and pulleys to power the grinding process. The mill stone area is elevated from the first floor level. You can see the mill stones, mill stone case, hook & crane and hopper. For more information and hours, call the Jasper Park and RecreationDepartment at 812-482-5959 between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday or the Jasper City Mill at 812-482-4924.