Pinsteps. Ely's Mill is a historical attraction alongside the picturesque Roaring Fork Creek
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Ely's Mill is a historical attraction alongside the picturesque Roaring Fork Creek. It was built as a tourist attraction in the late 1920s and featured local crafts, antiques, and honey (seasonally), as well as two overnight rental cabins. The mill is still privately owned and run by the original family who lives on-site. It was named after its founder, "Old Man Ely," a Yale law school graduate and a practising Tennessee lawyer. He preached against smoking, strong drink, and various foods and advocated for fresh vegetables, bananas, buttermilk, and spring water. The mill was powered by a 30-foot diameter water wheel and supplied with water from a race which began 800 feet upstream. As the place grew, more buildings were added, including barns, sheds, chicken houses, a hammer mill, and a blacksmith shop. Today, the mill stands as a vibrant reminder of days gone by and is being restored on an easy "pay as you go" plan with hopes of one day having the water wheel work again.

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Evgeny Praisman
Cherokee Orchard Road Near Gatlinburg on May 17, 2021

Embark on an unforgettable adventure with a two-hour road trip to Roaring Fork, nestled in the heart of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Discover the rich history of the area as you explore preserved historic buildings, including the Ephraim Bales House, Alfred Reagan Tub Mill, and Ely's Mill. Immerse yourself in the natural beauty of the area as you hike along the Trillium Gap and Grapeyard Ridge trails, taking in stunning vistas of the Roaring Fork stream and majestic waterfalls. With so much to explore and discover, this road trip is the perfect way to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life and reconnect with nature.

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Evgeny Praisman (author)
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