The Palermo Historical Society will show a short documentary “Memories of the Mill” on Tuesday, October 24, at 7 p.m., at the Worthing House, 54 No. Palermo Road in Palermo. There will be a brief business meeting at 6:30 pm.
The Dinsmore Grain Company Mill was a historic early 20th-century mill building on Branch Mills Road in China. Built in 1914 on the site with nearly 100 years of industrial use.
The Dinsmore Mill was located just west of the village center of Palermo, across the town line in China. It sat astride the West Branch Sheepscot River, which drains Branch Pond to the north and was impounded by the dam located beneath the mill structure. The mill was a 2-1/2 story frame structure, rectangular in shape, covered by a gabled roof and wooden shingle siding. A three-story tower rose near the center of the southern (street-facing) facade; it was also capped by a gabled roof. The ground floor of the building housed the main works, which included a water-driven turbine and the milling equipment. A conveyor belt provided access to the upper floor, which was historically used for the storage of grain.
The first documented mill at this site was in operation in 1817 but was destroyed by a fire in 1908. Rebuilt in 1914 and at first just a grist mill, it was expanded in 1935 to also function as a sawmill and operated until 1960.
Structural instability due to the building’s deteriorated condition made repair work difficult and potentially dangerous and the mill was razed in the summer of 2017.
The presentation is free and open to the public. For additional information, please contact Noreen Golden at 207-873-4134.