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Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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The Old Mill: 1899

The Old Mill: 1899

Green Lake, Wisconsin, circa 1899. "Old mill at railway station." 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.

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The Mystery of the Two Mills

The Brooklyn flour mill, owned by John B. Vliet, was in business before 1865. Sometime in the 1870s it was damaged by fire. In order to get the mill running again as soon as possible, Vliet borrowed more money from the original lender, Washington Libby. Libby eventually gained ownership through default, although Vliet continued to operate it. It was out-of-business by 1925—the date of the photo below (note the 12-over-12 double-hung windows). It was torn down in the early 1950s to salvage the wood inside. The second photo is a water side view of the building.

mill 1

mill 2

The Brooklyn Mill is often misidentified as the Sherwood Mill, which was built by Anson Dart and John C. Sherwood in nearby Dartford (now Green Lake) in 1849. However, the Sherwood Mill (also know as the Dartford Mill) burned down before 1875 and was never rebuilt. The mistaken identification is made because the Brooklyn Mill sat near the Green Lake Station depot on the Sheboygan and Fond du Lac Railroad (later the Chicago & Northwestern) line, which is out-of-sight of the mill in the main photo at top (location A on the map below). In 1975 the depot was relocated to downtown Green Lake and opened as a museum for the Dartford Historical Society (location B). The depot's new location just happens to be directly across the street from the site of the old Sherwood Mill, so it is easy to look at a modern map and see an old mill site and a railroad depot, and assume that they are the subjects mentioned in the original caption.

mill 3

The Dartford Historical Society has a great bunch of folks who helped untangle the mystery.

Still around?

My first thought was that this building would make a great and imposing post industrial loft style home. A shoreside property, too.

Is it still around? Couldn't find it on Google Streetview.

SHORPY OLD PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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