Tag Archive | Blacksmith

Beckman Mill-Heritage Day Festival in Beloit


9-8-13

Beckman Mill and Covered Bridge

Beckman Mill Marker

We time-traveled to the 1800’s to historic Beckman Mill in Beloit to enjoy some old-fashioned demos of skills used before high-tech and mass production.  The Amish help keep some of these crafts alive today. The centerpiece of this historic site is of course Beckman Mill, a grist mill that is still using the original millstones to grind mainly corn.  The covered bridge is a more recent addition and is quite popular!  The mill stream powers it, and this mill doesn’t use a waterwheel. Turbines inside do the turning of the grindstone. Enjoy this demonstration of the mill in action!

Buzz Beckman of the Beckman family was there and posed for a picture with us! The building behind us was where the Beckman family once lived, now it houses exhibits.

Buzz Beckman and us

We also enjoyed watching  the blacksmith making tools.

Beckman Mill Blacksmith

Another man was making flint arrowheads, wow!

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Some vendors were also there that incorporated these 1800’s skills. A broom-maker had many beautiful brooms for sale.

Broom Maker

Another vendor,Terri Dodge of Double D’s B’s of Beloit (608-365-1646) sold wonderful hand-crafted soap that smelled wonderful!  We got some! They also sell honey.  Also some beautiful pottery, some was even being made as we watched! The little girl on the left won first-place in the Laura Ingalls Wilder contest at the festival.

Double D's B's

Pottery Demo at Beckman Mill, Beloit

President Lincoln and his wife Mary Todd were visiting the mill also.  They gave a 10-minute presentation in character.  They are played by Jerry and Judy Wubbena of South Beloit, Il.  Contact them for your event, 815-389-8829. 

Present Abraham Lincoln and Mary Todd

We were also entertained by the Mill Road Band, playing tunes to get your feet tapping. Also dulcimer players, they played a song from Lincoln’s campaign before their presentation.

Mill Pond Band Beloit

Duclimer Players and Lincolns

The festival also featured a classic car show and wagon rides.

Horse -Drawn Rides

For an old-fashioned good time, come to Beckman Mill. They are open from May-October, mill tours on weekends.  Don’t forget a souvenier from the gift shop, your purchase supports the site’s continued operation!

Beckman Mill Gift Shop

Covered bridge at Beckman Mill

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History is Kept Alive in Cedarburg


5-13-13 and 6-23-13

This was our first time in Cedarburg together, my first in about 17 years. It’s in Ozaukee county, 20 miles north of Milwaukee. We arrived at 8:45 AM and our first stop was Covered Bridge Park.  This is the last covered bridge of this design in Wisconsin, crossing Cedar Creek.

Covered Bridge 2

Last Covered Bridge sign_2645Al and Laurie Text

After the park we went to their Washington Ave. Historic District. Over 200 buildings in Cedarburg have been preserved and restored, bustling with many interesting businesses.

The city used to have a train called the Interurban that took workers to Milwaukee. The train is long gone, but the original train depot is still there. There was a Little Free Library designed to look like the depot. The train track corridor is now the Interurban Trail for bikes and pedestrians. It’s 30 miles long.

Frametext Interurban DepotLittle Library depotIMG_2766Riding the Interurban

Interurban bridgeWashington Ave Historic District sign

Cedarburg Historyclock

Two impressive structures are side-by-side on Columbia  Road. First is  Landmark Feed, Seed and Supply, first a grist mill constructed in 1855. It’s 5 stories high and towers above Cedar Creek.

Grist Mill

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Next to it is The Pagoda Fine Jewelry store.

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Here is some interesting history on the mills and Cedar Creek.

First 100 Years

Mills on the CreekOrigins of Cedar Creek

The nearby Fire Department and Municipal Building are also in historic structures.

Fire Dept cropIMG_7672

We continue down Washington Ave to the Cedar Creek Settlement.. It’s a group of historic industrial buildings that now house about 30 shops including three restaurants.

Settlement

We had lunch at the Anvil Pub and Grille there. It is the former blacksmith shop, and anvils were scattered throughout the restaurant.  Our food was delicious!  A stone hearth oven cooks the food now instead of softening iron for blacksmiths. They had historic pictures of when it was a working blacksmith shop.

Anvil BarStone Hearth Oven

Blacksmith pic

We had a great visit here, this summary barely scratches to surface of our 5 1/2 hour visit.  I encourage you to come if you can, the shopping is fantastic!  I leave you with this mural I found painted on a wall.

Mural_2832