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In Their Own Words

September 01, 1739

Destruction of Mill by Flood

Georgia Trustees’ secretary William Stephens recorded the destruction of a mill by flood waters:

“Saturday. Horses coming according to Appointment, we mounted very early, and got to the Mill about Seven, where we saw indeed a melancholy Wreck, and the Mill sunk away and fallen all to one side, but still held entire, though impossible to set to right again: From whence it appeared, that the Work was of sufficient Strength, as the Artificer had put it together; so was likewise the fore Bay, and the main Hatch-way, through which the spare Water was to be carried off, no Part of it that we could discover, giving way, or taking any Damage: But the flood was so strong, and spread so wide, that when it came, it covered the whole Ground near it, overflowing the whole Work, which was perfectly buried under Water, and those waters worked their Way from the Outside of the Work underneath the Mill, which occasioned its Ruin: For after it had once found Vent, thro’ ever so small a Cranny, it soon made it larger, the Ground washing away apace, being of a loose, sandy Nature, so that Cavities were quickly made almost everywhere round it; the frame of the Whole yet holding together, after the greatest Part of the Foundation washed away and gone… .”

Source: William Stephens, A Journal of the Proceeding in Georgia ([no city cited] Readex Microprint Corporation, 1966), Vol. II, pp. 115-116.