Thompson’s Mills is a unique reminder of times past, chronicling the past 150 years of Oregon rural life. The oldest water-powered grain mill in the state, its system of waterways, dams, control gates, ditches and dikes has moved water from the Calapooia River to the mill head gates since 1858. Interpretive panels tell the story of the lives of the mill keepers and area farmers, historic water rights, and the millrace. The park is open daily.
History and critters
I adore the mill but truthfully my favorite part is Lucy the domesticated Canadian goose, the very very old bard car, and all the birds. Come here for tranquility
Wildlife and history in a lovely spot
Beautiful peaceful site just a few minutes out from Albany Oregon, off the beaten path, great docents, the mill exhibit is interesting and carried and the docents will run some of the machinery for you. Ducks, Swallows abound, and the friendly and tame Lucy the goose who will play with you and eat from your hand. Don't miss this.
Fascinating piece of period technology
It was amazing to see the technology involved in a water powered mill and learn the history of this mill. The mill still works and the park service staff open the water gates and you see the whole mechanism turn. There are detailed explanations of the process and hands-on exhibits for the kids. If you go in winter, wear warm clothes.
great picnic area and museum to enjoy on its self guided tour
I found this little grain mill/museum on a trip on a side road while traveling hwy 5 and decided to follow hwy. 99 and decided to make a stop. there is a small flock of farm ducks and chickens in the yard of the old mill owners house which you can feed for a quarter from the vending machine. The self guided tour was full of all sorts of machinery used in this old grist mill but, nothing here operates. The mill has a musty old smell that goes along with an old grain mill on the river. inside are original belts, pulleys, old timbers and equipment used to grind grains that were harvested in the area. a 2 to 3 hour time frame for a visit here is recommended for this state park.
Guided tour was wonderfully informative. Guide will operate the water driven turbine for you. Working displays of grain elevators, grist mill stones, and other equipment. This site is a work in progress but the staff and volunteers are doing a terrific job restoring the site. Very good for both adults and children. No fee to enter, but donations are accepted. Feed the chickens and ducks. :-) I was just passing by but am so thankful I stopped. Very quiet and peaceful on a Monday.