ALTON, Mo. – The historic Greer Mill in Oregon County, once known as Greer Roller Mill, is getting another facelift due to donations and contributions from community members.
Originally built in 1860 by Samuel W. Greer, the mill was set on fire by bushwhackers during the Civil War. After the war, Greer rebuilt the mill next to Greer Spring which runs directly into the Eleven Point River. The mill was later purchased by the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) in 1993.
In recent years, community members in Oregon County formed a nonprofit organization called ‘Friends of the Eleven Point River’ whose main focus has been to help restore the mill.
Over the last eight years, Mark Twain National Forest employees have coordinated with HistoriCorps, Friends of the Eleven Point River and other locals to help preserve the mill. Roberts Hardwood Flooring in Mountain View also cut wood flooring at cost to replace damaged boards inside of the mill.
In May of 2021, Friends of the Eleven Point River President Brian Sloss met with Eleven Point District Ranger Matt Dillon to present the Forest Service with $6,500 to help with further restoration. The group also donated more than $11,000 worth of equipment and supplies in order to improve recreational opportunities along the Eleven Point River.
Another issue that has plagued visitors of the mill is parking. Since the mill is located just off the highway, Ranger Dillon told The Heartlander that there is currently no safe access for people to park and walk towards the mill.
The issue hopes to be resolved in the coming months though as Dillon authorized the construction of a new trail last month to allow visitors a safe avenue to visit the mill without danger from vehicle traffic.
“I am pleased to authorize this trail construction, and I want to extend my sincere gratitude to the Friends of the Eleven Point River for making a past donation which will help us make this a trail that visitors will enjoy,” Dillon said in a recent press release.
Those interested in the Greer Mill restoration process can find more information on the U.S. Forest Service’s website.