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GRIST From the Mill Volume 6: Issue 2

Fall/Winter 2012

A publication of the Newlin Grist Mill

The Magic of Film: Newlin on the Silver Screen Visitors to the Newlin Grist Mill regularly comment on the beauty of the grounds and the special character of the historic buildings. This spring NGM attracted the attention of film makers both for the mill’s historical character and for what the film makers envisioned it could be transformed into. The first film crew represented a small non-profit organization preserving a 17th-century gristmill in Connecticut. As part of their efforts to tell the mill’s story, they needed to film early working machinery. Since their mill is no longer operational, they turned to NGM as one of a very few mills that represent milling technology prior to its automation by Oliver Evans in the 1790s. The film crew spent nearly four hours setting up and filming to produce less than five minutes of usable scenes. They focused on the water wheel and machinery trying to capture the movement and sound that magically brings the mill to life when it Top to Bottom: Director Jaymie Nickerson & cameraman Andy Buckmaster make adjustments as they illuminate the mill for filming; The log cabin as Santa’s Workshop.

Table of Contents 2

New Acquisitions Brick Making and Firing



Fall Harvest Festival Demonstrator Highlight: Brewing Tavern Night Volunteer Highlight: Earth Day Research: Winterthur Institute Archaeology at NGM Photos: Around The Mill


New Faces at Newlin Grist Mill


Calendar of Events

4 5

operates. Their biggest challenge was to light the shafts and gears without creating too many shadows. The second group of film makers chose the rustic character of the log cabin for a commercial. The crew spent a full day transforming the cabin into Santa’s workshop complete with snow falling outside (quite a feat in May). The cabin came to life with a disco ball and Santa and his elf broke into what some might

call a dance. The day even included a brief appearance by a reindeer. Santa’s workshop/disco was part of a Christmas commercial for a group of Florida malls. These projects provide promotional footage for NGM’s use, public recognition, and generate funds to help maintain the buildings and grounds.

New Acquisitions

Nicholas Newlin Foundation Trustees/ Newlin Grist Mill Staff

Left: Blacksmith Shop Acquisition Right: Front of Concord Mills Postcard

Objects and documents are physical connections with people and events from the past. NGM recently obtained two new acquisitions that help us connect with our past - one that enhances the interpretation of the blacksmith shop and the other a reminder of a tragic event at the Mill. The contents of a blacksmith shop were purchased from Eleanor Given. Her late husband was a blacksmith who collected tools and equipment from throughout the region. The new equipment will be added to the educational collection in order to provide our volunteer blacksmiths with a wider variety of usable tools. The mandrills, swage block, hammers, tongs, and other tools will allow more techniques to be demonstrated and better illustrate the craft of the blacksmith. A postcard of the Concord Mills ca. 1900 was also recently acquired. Concord Mills was the business name of the Newlin Mill at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th centuries. The image represents an important part of the mill’s history but the message on the back was quite intriguing. It references “little Johny” who was killed between the mill and railroad station. Johny turns out to have been John Hill (son of Samuel Hill the mill owner) who was killed on the Pennsylvania Railroad.

Brick Making and Firing During the summer of 2012, an active “brick yard” has been operating at NGM. The project was an experimental archaeology collaboration with the New Castle Historical Society. Over twelve days, Directors Tony Shahan and Mike Connelly (with the assistance of over 200 volunteers) made 500 bricks. Once fired, the bricks will be used in the Amstel House in Historic New Castle, Delaware to complete the restoration of a hearth. The final opportunity to make brick will be at the 2012 Harvest Festival. Volunteers will be manning the brick yard to help visitors learn how to tread the clay and then mold it into bricks. On the same day, the bricks already made will be stacked to form a brick clamp or kiln. The green or un-fired bricks will be stacked and covered in a layer of fired brick before being encapsulated in a mixture of mud and ash. The bricks will be fired for 3-5 days in October after Fall Harvest Festival. First, the moisture must be slowly cooked off being careful not to 2 | Newlin Grist Mill

cause the bricks to shatter. Then the heat will be slowly increased to 2000 degrees and held there until the bricks are hard. If you are interested in making brick, plan on attending the Harvest Festival on October 6th. If you would like to help with the kiln please contact Tony Shahan at 610-459-2359 or Above: Two volunteers tread clay in the treading pit

Executive Trustee Mortimer Newlin Sellers Vice-Chair Timothy Barnard Secretary Virginia DeNenno Treasurer Henry F. Thompson, Jr. Board of Trustees Eliza Newlin Carney Ellen M. Cronin Lawrence Dunbar Patrick Harshbarger Johannes Jarka-Sellers Lucy Bell Jarka-Sellers Frank J. McKelvey, Jr. Bill Newlin, Jr. William V.P. Newlin Susan Shisler Rapp Frances Stead Sellers Lucy Bell Newlin Sellers Mortimer Newlin Sellers Peter H. Sellers Marianne D. Squryes Henry Thompson, Sr. Mason C. Thompson Mark Willcox III Emeriti Nicholas Sellers Anthony F.C. Wallace Mark Willcox, Jr. Full Time Staff Tony Shahan, Director Lauren Burnham Keith Doms Rick Fellows Andrea Gómez Kevin Miller Part Time Staff Sarah Carroll Kelly Cordian Keith Doms KB Inglee Bodge Inglee Brian McBride Lindsay Susco Grist From The Mill Design: Andrea Gómez Editors: Andrea Gómez and Patrick Harshbarger

Fall Harvest Festival:Digging Saturday 6th Into October Newlin Mill’s History

KB Inglee shows a heritage breed chicken

Children and adults enjoy pumpkin painting.

Lew Boughner demonstrates chair caning

1st Maryland Regiment completes a musket firing demonstration

Fall is fast approaching and this means a variety of things. School is back in session, there is a wonderful crispness to the air, leaves are beginning to turn (making NGM a glorious place for a walk), and it’s time for our annual Fall Harvest Festival!

ing, potash making, and even brick making in the brick yard! We hope you will get your feet dirty and help us tread clay in the pit or help us make hand-made brick before the brick firing.) This year honeybees and historic bee skeps will also be displayed.

The sights, sounds, and smells of the 18th-century will again come to life on October 6th. Smell the fire as open-hearth cooks prepare period meals, hear the pounding of anvils by blacksmiths, have your silhouette made by a traveling silhouette artist. Enjoy the sounds of period music and a cappella choir performances by the Colonial Revelers (performances at 11am and 1pm).

Festival favorites such as colonial dancing, mill demonstrations, colonial toys and games, pumpkin painting and hay rides (weather permitting) will also help round out the activities for this day of family fun.

This year over 20 demonstrators will ply colonial crafts and trades including spinning, weaving, laundering, iron mak-

We hope you will join us for this unique 18th-century experience. See you on October 6th.

• When: October 6th, 10am-4pm (rain or shine) • Admission: Free

Featured Demonstrator Historic Brewing

We are pleased to announce that Richard Wagner will demonstrate 18th-century brewing techniques at this year’s Fall Harvest Festival. Mr. Wagner, who depicts a 1750s itinerant brew master, has been conducting historical brewing demonstrations since 1993. In the 1750’s such tradesmen would have gone from farm to farm with horse, wagon, and portable brewery. Using handmade wooden barrels, a copper kettle, fire, water, barley, and hops, he demonstrates colonial brewing techniques. We look forward to learning more about this trade at Fall Harvest Festival. For more information about the history of local brewing, check out Wagner’s recently published book, Philadelphia Beer: A Heady History of Brewing the Cradle of Liberty. | 3

Tavern Night

...A New Newlin Grist Mill Tradition Join us on November 3rd when the log Board, 9 Pins, and an assortment of dice cabin will once again be transformed into games. the Nine Tun Tavern. The tavern will open its doors at 7pm on Last year, tavern goers were treated with November 3rd in the log cabin. Seating five courses of food to sample. Each is limited so be sure to get your tickets dish represented a type of fare typically early. available in colonial taverns. Samples of several different drinks were available To reserve tickets do one of the following: • Fill out the newsletter flyer insert and including flip, rum punches, bounce, send a check. and mead. The food and drink were • Print out a registration form or accompanied by music and games creating purchase tickets online at: an evening where fun was had by all. (Online tickets sales are subject to a ticket Those attending Tavern Night this year and handling fee.) can expect another great evening of food, • Stop by the visitor center to register drink, and amusements. Look for favorite (cash or check only). dishes from last year (meat pies, custom sausage, and bread pudding), but expect a Admission for this fundraiser is $50 per few new surprises. person. All proceeds go to support the Dabbs Woodfin Internship Program. As for the drink? We only use the best These interns gain valuable practical rums for our punches and a batch of cherry experience while assisting NGM staff bounce is currently being prepared. with collections care and management, Bill Russell will provide the musical educational programming, and historic entertainment with his mandolin, dulcimer, preservation activities. (See pg. 7 to read and harp. The tavern keeper has assembled about the 2012 Woodfin intern and the a collection of games including Shut the work she did at NGM.) We hope to see Box, Admirals Mistress, Cribbage, Bridge you at Tavern Night!

Volunteer Highlight

On May 5th NGM was able to accomplish important environmental projects for Earth Day thanks to the efforts of many hard working volunteers. We had a great turn out of 33 people from the community. Teams worked on projects that included invasive plant removal, native plant installation, trail maker installation, and water system clean-up. NGM received materials donations from PennDot, Wawa, Herr’s, and Home Depot. Because Earth Day was part of the Great American Clean Up initiative, pictures and results of the event are featured on the Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful statewide website. A special thank you to the following people for their hard work and participation: Patrick Pasquariello Traivon Cherry Antoine Waller Jon Kennedy Bernie Krieg Amy Delzingaro Mike Delzingaro Julia Delzingaro Amy Delzingaro Courtney Goodrich Hayleigh Goodrich 4 | Newlin Grist Mill

Carol Pitts Paul Pitts Susan Procario Matthew Bock Gail Bock Carol Shahan Lucy Bell Sellers Katie Shuey Regan McMinn Amanda Miller Andrew James

Jen Flounders Madeline Flounders Jack Flounders Anne Lawler Andrew Lawler Dan Martin Noah Martin Rohon Martin Tom Stanton Ben Stanton Will Stanton

TavernHighlight: Night Research

....AWinterthur New Newlin Grist Mill Tradition Summer Institute Research is the keystone for any historical site that wants to present accurate stories in their appropriate settings. A focus of the past year, has been improving our knowledge about the people who lived and worked at the NGM, their daily activities, and the objects they used. In July and August, Summer Institute fellows from the Winterthur Program in American Material Culture assisted NGM staff with the research. Their task was to analyze seven probate inventories for Newlin and Trimble family members from 1699 to 1772 focusing on items in each inventory associated with foodways. The eight students were divided into four groups investigating the objects associated with Food Preservation & Dairying, Hearth Cooking & Food Preparation, Serving & Consumption, and Beverages. The fellows were asked to provide possible examples of what the objects would have looked like in a typical residence based on date, location, economic status, and ethnic influences.

The project culminated in oral presentations by each team which will be compiled into a report of their results. As with most research, many questions remain unanswered. However, everyone involved felt it was a valuable project both for the information provided to NGM and also in how it required them to look at objects in a different way. If you would like to help answer one of our many research questions, contact Volunteer Coordinator Lauren Burnham at 610-459-2359.

Questions and Discoveries from Archaeology The 2012 archaeological season started in April. Excavation continued where it left off after the 2011 season by investigating the buried walls on the north side of the Miller’s House next to the beehive oven. Thus far, three connected walls have been exposed and many artifacts have been recovered. The wall extending from the house appears to date close to the time of the house’s construction. The other two walls appear to be of late 19th through 20th-century construction. Most of the artifacts recovered this year date to the late 18th though first half of the 19th-centuries. However, most of the artifacts come from soil deposited as fill around the walls. The walls and fill make the unit excavations complex and consequently the work is slow. However, we have partnered with the Society for Pennsylvania Archaeology (SPA) to add more archaeology days, including weekdays, to the schedule.

members of the SPA Chapter 21, the West Chester University Archaeology Field School (directed by Dr. Heather Whooley), Cub Scouts, and Summer Discovery campers. As the old saying goes, many hands make light work. So please feel free to stop by and lend a hand to make our work lighter.

Many of the artifacts that were excavated were cataloged into our Past Perfect database by our intern, Anne Sokolow. She has entered all of the surface finds from the park property that have been turned in over the past several years. She has also finished cataloguing the artifacts recovered from the utility trench excavations from the Polecat Road House on loan from the Concord Township Historical Society. These collections will be used to compare the lives of mill workers using material culture techniques. We plan on continuing the excavations, weather permitting, through the fall. Scheduled dates are September 22, October 13, and November 17. Excavations run from 10am-3pm. We are also planning on doing some excavations at the Fall Harvest Festival. We have had lots of help this season including local residents,

From Top to Bottom: Test Units 3 & 4 - the tops of the three walls are exposed. The base of the beehive oven is in the upper left corner; Community members help excavate; Cub Scout Camp learns about archaeology. | 5

New Faces at Newlin Grist Mill

Brick Making

Summer Discovery

Community Archaeology

Dabbs’ Day

Appreciation Garden Party

Earth Day

All Around the Mill

6 | Newlin Grist Mill

Earth Day Pictures © Susan Procario

Keith Doms, Site Manager We welcome Keith Doms as he takes over the position of Site Manager. Born in Minnesota to a military family, Keith moved around a bit before the family settled down in Baltimore and Baltimore County, Maryland. Keith went to the University of Delaware where he received his B.A. in Anthropology in 1985. During his studies, he took courses in biology, chemistry, geology, museum studies, and conservation. After graduating, he worked supervising the anthropology labs for twenty years. He then left the university and worked for eight years doing contract archaeology for an engineering firm in New Jersey. Keith was a volunteer at Greenbank Mill, New Castle County, Delaware, for ten years where he gave tours, supervised a volunteer archaeology program, researched, and helped run special programs. He is also a living history participant with a duel focus on Colonial America and the American Civil War. Keith’s wife Tracy does historical textiles and has also volunteered at Newlin Grist Mill. They have 2 year old twins, Bryn and Rhys who keep Keith and Tracy busy when not at work. Anne Sokolow, Dabbs Woodfin Intern (Collections Management) Anne Sokolow is NGM’s collections and archives intern. She recently earned her B.A. degree in American History and Material Culture Studies from the University of Delaware. A Baltimore native, Anne’s interest in history can be attributed to her parents and grandmother, who made an effort to take her to museums and historic sites while on family vacations. Her previous internships and volunteer work have been at the President Cavlin Coolige State Historic Site, Fort Delaware State Park, and Wintherthur Museum. During her work at NGM, Anne has processed and re-housed the Concord Mill Records collection, the Nicholas Newlin Foundation records, and a portion of the NGM site photographs. She also assisted in processing and cataloging the Polecat Road House archeology collection. In addition to her internship Anne also worked as a Summer Discovery Camp teacher. When not studying museum objects, Anne can be found trail running, fishing in the Brandywine, or buried in a novel. Thank you Anne! Joe Voltz, Volunteer Research Intern Joe, a native of Downingtown, turned his early enthusiasm for history into a lifelong career of learning and discovery. Joe graduated from Lehigh University in 2011 with a B.A. in history. He returned to Lehigh for further education, and hopes to complete his M.A. in history with a concentration in public history by the spring of 2013. Joe’s academic interests include 19th-century American history, colonial history, and the history of technology. He also enjoys researching food and entertainment cultures throughout history. This summer, Joe has researched furnishings for the mill during the mid-18th-century, colonial foodways in Chester and Delaware County, historical milling technologies, and historical land use for the Newlin Mill area. “The importance of mills in colonial life never struck me until I started my research;” he says, “they were essential to colonial life, simply by providing a constant source of power. The level of engineering knowledge required to establish and maintain a mill in the 18th century astounds me.” Outside of history, Joe enjoys sociology, playing trumpet for his university band, and working at a day camp for kindergarten students. Thank you Joe! | 7

Nicholas Newlin Foundation Newlin Grist Mill 219 South Cheyney Road, Glen Mills PA 19342 P 610-459-2359 |

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NonProfit Organization U.S. Postage PAID West Chester, PA Permit #503

VISIT US! Newlin Grist Mill 219 S. Cheyney Rd. Glen Mills, PA 19342 P: 610-459-2359 Hours: Visitor Center March-November; 9am-4pm December-February 10am-3pm Hours: Park 9am-Dusk Tours: Monday-Friday: 11am & 2pm Saturday and Sunday 10am, 11am, 1pm, 2pm

CALENDAR OF EVENTS Saturday September


Community Archaeology 10am-3pm


Saturday October

Fall Harvest Festival 10am-4pm

Saturday October

Community Archaeology 10am-3pm




Saturday November

Tavern Night Fundraiser 7pm-9:30pm

Saturday November

Community Archaeology 7pm-9:30pm




Email to receive email updates about our events.

POND FISHING Saturdays and Sundays Sept. 15, Sept. 16 Sept. 22, Sept. 23 Sept. 29, Sept. 30 Closed Oct. 6, Open Oct. 7 Oct. 13, Oct. 14 Oct. 20, Oct. 21 Oct. 27, Oct. 28


Keep an eye out for an upcoming lecture on the Kew Palace Kitchens by Marc Meltonville. Date TBA soon! Sign up for our email list for a notification regarding this event.

Fall 2012 Newsletter  

Newlin Grist Mill's Fall 2012 Issue of Grist from the Mill

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