Friends of Peirce Mill

Friends of Peirce Mill The Friends of Peirce Mill ("the Friends") is a non-profit 501(c)(3) volunteer organization dedicate
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The Friends of Peirce Mill ("the Friends") is a non-profit 501(c)(3) volunteer organization dedicated to the restoration to operating condition of historic Peirce Mill in Rock Creek Park.

We'll be bringing (part of) Peirce Mill up the hill to Mount Pleasant tonight for Art All Night! The Friends of Peirce M...
09/29/2023

We'll be bringing (part of) Peirce Mill up the hill to Mount Pleasant tonight for Art All Night! The Friends of Peirce Mill and the National Park Service will be grinding corn on Lamont Street this Friday from 6:00 to 9:30pm.

Then come down to Peirce Mill on Saturday, September 30, for Rock Creek Park Day from noon to 4:00pm!

District Bridges Rock Creek Park

09/23/2023

Due to the tropical cyclone entering the area, all volunteer events in Rock Creek Park have been cancelled.

Additional cancelled events include:

🚫Children's Day at Peirce Mill. The mill will still run, but only if there is no thunder, lightning or active flooding of the facility.

🚫Exploring the Sky evening telescope program--the telescope portion of the program is cancelled. The planetarium pre-show will still happen at 7:00 PM. If we reach capacity in the planetarium for the 7:00PM program, a second program will occur at 7:30PM.

Please in the park. If driving, please remember to "Turn around, don't drown." Drive slowly and be prepared for roads to be temporarily closed in the event of fallen trees or flooding.

Because of heavy rain and strong winds in the forecast, tomorrow's Children's Day has been canceled. 🙁Peirce Mill will s...
09/22/2023

Because of heavy rain and strong winds in the forecast, tomorrow's Children's Day has been canceled. 🙁

Peirce Mill will still be open from noon to 4:00pm. We apologize for any inconvenience.

Rock Creek Park

As of now, we're still planning to offer our Children's Day and Milling Demonstration  this Saturday, September 23. Peir...
09/21/2023

As of now, we're still planning to offer our Children's Day and Milling Demonstration this Saturday, September 23. Peirce Mill will be open from noon to 4:00pm and milling from noon to 3:00pm.

We'll be moving all the fun indoors--stop by and make a cornhusk doll or watch our millstones turn corn into cornmeal!

Rock Creek Park

Don't miss out on all the fun!  Children's Day at Peirce Mill is this Saturday, September 23 from noon to 4:00!The mill ...
09/19/2023

Don't miss out on all the fun! Children's Day at Peirce Mill is this Saturday, September 23 from noon to 4:00!

The mill will be running from noon to 3:00pm, and we’ll have special tours just for kids. Try grinding and sifting grain by hand, then watch our giant millstones turn corn into cornmeal. Play with water toys, then learn how the wooden waterwheel powers Peirce Mill.

Outside the mill, enjoy old-fashioned lawn games like co****le and ring toss. Or make your own toys, just like kids did in the olden days! We’ll have cup and ball toys to assemble and take home, and plenty of cornhusks for doll-making.

Follow the old head race path... to Peirce Mill!
09/17/2023

Follow the old head race path... to Peirce Mill!

Fall is our favorite time of year in the orchard--check out this history of orchards near Rock Creek!
09/11/2023

Fall is our favorite time of year in the orchard--check out this history of orchards near Rock Creek!

A Fruit Tree Grows in Washington: A History of Orchards Near Rock Creek In an orchard on a hillside behind Peirce Barn, Tim Makepeace works with volunteers and Rock Creek Park staff to care for two dozen apple and pear trees planted in 2012. These eleven-year-old trees represent more than 200

Waiting out the rain at the mill!
09/09/2023

Waiting out the rain at the mill!

Thanks to FOPM Board President Adam Sieminski for writing this excellent article on the impact of invasive vines on Rock...
09/09/2023

Thanks to FOPM Board President Adam Sieminski for writing this excellent article on the impact of invasive vines on Rock Creek Park and DC neighborhoods. Scary stuff!

The invasion of the ‘tree snatchers’September 7, 2023 by FHC 1 CommentWinter creeper (Euonymus fortunei) climbing a mature tree (left) and growing on the ground on Albemarle Street NW (right). (photo by Adam Sieminski)by Adam SieminskiWinter creeper (Euonymus fortunei) is a tenacious, perennial,...

Come see Washington's last working gristmill in action this Saturday, September 9, from noon to 3:00pm!
09/07/2023

Come see Washington's last working gristmill in action this Saturday, September 9, from noon to 3:00pm!

08/28/2023

Historic Peirce Mill, in DC's Rock Creek Park, has a long history of hosting community dances.

08/28/2023

How wonderful to see folks dancing in the mill yard again at our first Summer Square Dance since 2018!

DC Square Dance Collective

What a marvelous night for a square dance! Thank you DC Square Dance Collective and Devil in the Mill for making a magic...
08/27/2023

What a marvelous night for a square dance! Thank you DC Square Dance Collective and Devil in the Mill for making a magical night at Peirce Mill!

DC Square Dance Collective Rock Creek Park

Tonight's the night! Come on down to Peirce Mill between 7:00 and 10:00pm and join the DC Square Dance Collective for th...
08/26/2023

Tonight's the night! Come on down to Peirce Mill between 7:00 and 10:00pm and join the DC Square Dance Collective for the first summer dance since 2018.

The event is free and no dancing experience is required--a caller will be on hand to lead the dances. Or just sit back and enjoy music by Devil in the Mill and a late summer evening in beautiful Rock Creek Park!

DC Square Dance Collective Devil in the Mill Rock Creek Park

Swing your partner like it’s 2018!  For the first time in five years, the DC Square Dance Collective returns to Peirce M...
08/23/2023

Swing your partner like it’s 2018! For the first time in five years, the DC Square Dance Collective returns to Peirce Mill on Saturday, August 26, from 7:00 to 10:00pm.

We’ll be dancing to live music under twinkling lights in the mill yard. Don’t know the dos and don’ts of do-si-dos? Don’t despair! A caller will teach all the dances and guide you through with ease! All are welcome, no partner, lessons, or prior experience needed.

Ninety years ago, on August 23, 1933, the Chesapeake-Potomac Hurricane caused catastrophic flooding on Rock Creek. Compa...
08/22/2023

Ninety years ago, on August 23, 1933, the Chesapeake-Potomac Hurricane caused catastrophic flooding on Rock Creek. Compare this photo of the Peirce Mill waterfall to the postcard view of the same scene.

Great to see the Old Wye Mill in action today! The oldest continuously operating gristmill in America, it was built on M...
08/19/2023

Great to see the Old Wye Mill in action today! The oldest continuously operating gristmill in America, it was built on Maryland's Eastern Shore in 1682.

That means Wye Mill was almost 150 years old when Peirce Mill was built in 1829. We just hope we look this good when we're 341 years old!

https://www.oldwyemill.org/

Wye Mill

Late summer in the orchard
08/18/2023

Late summer in the orchard

Devil in the Mill, joined by Kai Knorr on bass, will perform at the Peirce Mill Summer Square Dance on Saturday, August ...
08/15/2023

Devil in the Mill, joined by Kai Knorr on bass, will perform at the Peirce Mill Summer Square Dance on Saturday, August 26, from 7:00 to 10:00pm.

Don't let the fancy footwork in this video intimidate you. A caller from the DDC Square Dance Collectivewill guide even novice dancers, so come on down to Rock Creek Park!

'Devil in the Mill' performing 'Julianne Johnson'. Fiddle: Julius BjornsonBanjo: Dakota KarperFeet: Meghan MetteMore at: www.devilinthemill.com

First milling day of 2023! Thanks to everyone who helped us get the wheels turning again!  Rock Creek Park
08/13/2023

First milling day of 2023! Thanks to everyone who helped us get the wheels turning again! Rock Creek Park

We knew Rock Creek Park was home to Washington's last working gristmill; now we've learned the park also includes the Di...
08/10/2023

We knew Rock Creek Park was home to Washington's last working gristmill; now we've learned the park also includes the District's girthiest tree:

After a monthlong contest, this girthy chestnut oak was named the District's king tree.

Join us at Peirce Mill this Saturday, August 12, from 11:00am to 12:00pm for an old-fashioned ice cream-making demonstra...
08/09/2023

Join us at Peirce Mill this Saturday, August 12, from 11:00am to 12:00pm for an old-fashioned ice cream-making demonstration.

Stick around afterwards for our first milling demonstration of 2023!

Devil in the Mill, joined by Kai Knorr on bass, will perform at the Peirce Mill Summer Square Dance on Saturday, August ...
08/08/2023

Devil in the Mill, joined by Kai Knorr on bass, will perform at the Peirce Mill Summer Square Dance on Saturday, August 26, from 7:00 to 10:00pm! Organized with the DC Square Dance Collective, this free summer dance returns to Rock Creek Park for the first time since 2018. https://www.devilinthemill.com/

Devil in the Mill DC Square Dance Collective

07/28/2023

In one week, Stratford Hall will be delighted to see it's historic gristmill up and running for the first time in three years!

We look forward to sharing the experience with guests as Steve Bashore, Director of Historic Trades and Head Distiller at Mount Vernon, works the water-powered gristmill for production once more. Please join us August 5th to celebrate!

For more information contact us or check out the event at our website (stratfordhall.org).

So much fun to have Teatro La Bolsa at Peirce Mill today performing their original play in Spanish and English, “La gall...
07/22/2023

So much fun to have Teatro La Bolsa at Peirce Mill today performing their original play in Spanish and English, “La gallina y la tortilla de maíz.” After the show, kids made their own pretend tortillas from cornmeal play dough!

Teatro La Bolsa Rock Creek Park Latino Conservation Week

We're looking forward to welcoming Teatro La Bolsa to Peirce Mill tomorrow!  At 11:00am they'll be performing “La gallin...
07/21/2023

We're looking forward to welcoming Teatro La Bolsa to Peirce Mill tomorrow!

At 11:00am they'll be performing “La gallina y la tortilla de maíz,” a play for children in Spanish and English.

For more information, please visit: https://www.friendsofpeircemill.org/event/teatro-la-bolsa/

Join us at Peirce Mill this Saturday, July 22, at 11:00am for a children's performance by Teatro La Bolsa. In this inter...
07/20/2023

Join us at Peirce Mill this Saturday, July 22, at 11:00am for a children's performance by Teatro La Bolsa. In this interactive play in Spanish and English, kids will learn how corn is grown, milled, and baked. Stick around after the show and try milling corn yourself!

More information is here: https://www.friendsofpeircemill.org/event/teatro-la-bolsa/

¡Llamamiento a todas las familias! Calling all families!Peirce Mill is celebrating Latino Conservation Week this Saturda...
07/19/2023

¡Llamamiento a todas las familias! Calling all families!

Peirce Mill is celebrating Latino Conservation Week this Saturday, July 22, at 11:00am with a performance in Spanish and English by Teatro La Bolsa!

“La gallina y la tortilla de maíz,” is an interactive retelling of the classic Little Red Hen story. The play shows how corn is grown, harvested, milled, and turned into tortillas.

After the play, families are invited to tour the mill, try grinding corn by hand, or use cornmeal play dough to make their own pretend tortillas!

Free public programs at Peirce Mill are supported by the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities.

https://latinoconservationweek.com/events/2023-events/item/1788-

Rock Creek Park Latino Conservation Week Teatrolabolsa DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities DC Commission on the Arts & Humanities

07/19/2023

This week’s Buena Vista Grits from Deep Roots Milling at Woodsons Mill in the are milled from a landrace variety of dent corn. Landrace grains have distinctive characteristics that come from development and adaptation over time to conditions of a localized geographic region. That means that this crop is very at home growing in the Mid-Atlantic, fits in well with the local environment, and generally produces strong yields for farmers.

Back in 2019, we learned that a local theater group, Teatro La Bolsa, was retelling the classic Little Red Hen story in ...
07/15/2023

Back in 2019, we learned that a local theater group, Teatro La Bolsa, was retelling the classic Little Red Hen story in Spanish and English. A play about corn and milling for children would be perfect for Peirce Mill!

But sadly, the pandemic intervened. Four long years later, we're delighted to announce that Teatro La Bolsa will perform "La gallina y la tortilla de maíz" at Peirce Mill on Saturday, July 22 at 11:00am. Here's a photograph of a recent rehearsal:

A huge thank you to the basement clean-up crew, who spent most of yesterday morning hidden in the gear pit at Peirce Mil...
07/13/2023

A huge thank you to the basement clean-up crew, who spent most of yesterday morning hidden in the gear pit at Peirce Mill.

Rock Creek Park and the Friends of Peirce Mill worked together to clean the giant wooden gears and basement floor at Washington's last working gristmill.

Since the mill floods frequently, this was no easy job!

If you purchased cornmeal at Peirce Mill in the mid-20th century, it came in this bag, along with these two recipes prin...
12/19/2022

If you purchased cornmeal at Peirce Mill in the mid-20th century, it came in this bag, along with these two recipes printed on the back. And miller Ray Watt may have filled your order!

Thanks to our friends DC History Center Kiplinger Library for sharing these recipes!

12/19/2022

Today is the last day Peirce Mill will be open in 2022. We will return in 2023 with our winter hours.

The mill will be open 10:00AM to 4:00PM today.

In 2023, the mill will be open on Saturdays and Sundays from 12:00-4:00 in January and February.

!

Sometimes get distracted by cool stuff found while researching something else, like this "exploded isometric" of Peirce ...
12/12/2022

Sometimes get distracted by cool stuff found while researching something else, like this "exploded isometric" of Peirce Mill from the Historic American Buildings Survey.

A couple of fascinating details from artist and naturalist Titian Ramsay Peale's photograph of Peirce Mill from the 1850...
12/10/2022

A couple of fascinating details from artist and naturalist Titian Ramsay Peale's photograph of Peirce Mill from the 1850s:

1) The open door of the carriage barn, with a wagon wheel beside it.

2) What looks to be a some sort of grinding stone beside the mill's tailrace.

12/08/2022

Big wheels must keep on turning!

Rock Creek Park is home to a 19th Century gristmill called Peirce Mill. The mill was used to grind various grains into flour for farmers in the region. Today we still use it as a demonstration mill to grind corn into corn flour in the spring and summer months.

The mill needs a lot of , and this is just one of the many things we do to keep the mill running. We are using metal rods to manually rotate the wheel to keep it from getting unevenly worn. This way, one side of the wheel doesn't become waterlogged and throw the wheel off balance which could damage parts.

What kind of maintenance are you doing this winter to keep your things up and running?

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2401 Tilden Street, NW
Washington D.C., DC
20008

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The Abner Cloud House & Fletcher's Cove/Boat House 4930 Canal Road. Known then(1920-1940's) as the the Copperthite Boat House! Restored, lived-in and run by James Copperthite (former chief baker at the Connecticut-Copperthite Pie Baking Company of Georgetown) and his wife Josephine.
Cloud was the first lock house keeper to live here and his GG Grandson worked for and later partnered and became proprietor there.

James Copperthite restored the Abner Cloud house in the day. Hired Fletcher ran the boat house which is operation to this day and willed the property to Fletcher ( the great great grandson of cloud) when he passed on!
Opportunity to acquire an inexpensive and nice vernacular painting of the mill via eBay :)
Interesting interior view of the mill on what looks like a midcentury postcard - I don't think I've come across this one before:
Came across this on eBay:
Thought you guys might find this interesting:
Under the heading, "You never know what you are going to run into": A Northern Water Snake swallowing a Blue Back Herring at Peirce Mill.
We are having a Cider Tasting January 6. Members come free and others can join for $25.
Double your donations to Friends of Peirce Mill on Giving Tuesday!!! November 28th
TrueGrist
News from the Friends of Peirce Mill
http://www.friendsofpeircemill.org/2016/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/Summer2017.pdf