The Durham Grist Mill, located in its eponymous Bucks County township, was set to reopen after state grants funded a $53,000 renovation. Ongoing pandemic concerns, however, have scotched the public reveal planned by Durham Township officials and the Durham Historical Society. Kathryn Finegan Clark sifted through the decision for the Bucks County Herald..
The site’s use as a commercial entity goes back to 1727, when it originally hosted a blast furnace that made ammunition for the Revolutionary War. In 1820, the grist mill replaced the furnace and was used to grind grain for flour and feed into the late 1960s.
Bucks County purchased the property and then sold it to Durham Township.
The Pennsylvania Department of Economic Development’s grant funded improvements that include a safer viewing area, a new feedbox, and access to handicapped-accessible rest rooms.
The mill is also being positioned as a unique space for meetings, weddings, and other events.
“It’s a shame,” said Lois Oleksa, a Durham Historical Society director, commenting on the cancelled unveiling to the public. “There’s so much history in this one place, three centuries of history.
“But,” she continued, “There’s no reason we can’t have an open house at another date.”
More on the Durham Grist Mill’s postponed ribbon-cutting is at the Bucks County Herald.