Before High Tech: Mill at Anselma

The Mill at Anselma, a.k.a. Lightfoot Mill, is an 18th century small, custom grist mill located in Chester Springs, Pennsylvania. It was built circa 1747 and operated until 1982, milling flour for the area’s residents. It is one of eight known mills that operated at one time or another in the Township of Pikeland.

The colonial-era power transmission system used at this custom grain mill is likely the only operating survivor of the period. The essential elements of the mill are the water wheel (power source) which operates the mill machinery (gear train) driving the millstones (which grind the grain into meal).

Mill Drive Train
Millstone

Over the course of its 235 year history the mill was owned and operated by five different families, with each new owner adapting to a changing and challenging industrial environment but without altering the original power transmission.

There are probably only a handful of places offering visitors completely authentic colonial technology, which is, of course, archaic when considering technology today, but the Mill at Anselma provides a glimpse of the methods and means Americans used for production as they forged their way ahead.

It was declared a National Historical Site in 2005.

Over For Now.

Main Street One