A brief history of Central Roller Mills
Central Roller Mills purchased property to build mill on March 28, 1899 for $43.
The original structure was a three story and one story brick building built around 1903. Probably started out as a flour mill to process grain from local farmers. I am assuming that it produced flour and possibly corn meal. At times it was idle. In 1934 the Pendleton Oil Mill purchased the Central Roller Mill.
Changes over time
At sometime prior to 1938 a second story was added to the original one story part and another one story concrete block building was added (probably a sales area). A wooden tower to handle incoming grain was added to the front of the original 3 story structure. Also added were 9 grain storage silos directly behind the tower. One of the most interesting aspect about the wooden silos is that the construction is rough cut 2x6 lumber stacked flat and 30 feet high. We do not have an official measurement for all the structures but the tax books list it at 12,000 square feet. We have been told this was where the good stuff was stored!
To complement this addition,10 metal and 2 concrete grain storage silos were added. These silos had the capacity to store 80,000 bushels of grain.
The company constructed a two story feed mill behind the original structures and adjacent to the metal and concrete silos. Several wooden storage buildings were added to accommodate produced product prior to shipment.
Sometime after 1938 several connection alleys and connecting structures were added so that all buildings could be accessed under one roof. Once all additions were completed the Central Roller Mills consisted of :
- Flour mill in the original 3 story structure
- Corn mill in the two story building
- Feed mill in the 2 story and one story attached building
In its heyday it produced 100 barrels of flour, 5000 lbs of corn meal, and 15 tons of mixed feed per day and had a storage capacity of 80,000 bushels of grain.
The corn mill and the feed mill remained in operation until the late 70's or early 80's but the flour mill ceased operation when the local schools quit making their own bread which caused them to loose a significant part of their business and shut it down.
After 1980 there was first a food salvage business in the one story section then an antique businesses operated until around 2004. No occupants have used the building since around 2006.
The corn mill consisted of one roller mill, a Meadows mill stone grinder, 2 enteleters, a Niagara Gyro Sifter with three separations, a self-rising mixer, a Forster Grain Scourer, and a couple of cyclones. There is also a bagger and a couple of hoppers. One hopper has a piece of equipment that I have not identified.
The feed mill seems to be very simple. It has a hammer mill, two Kelly Duplex Vertical feed mixers, a machine to mix in the black strap molasses, and wooden hoppers. There was an overhead auger that transported some of the feed over to the main building where there was a hopper and a bagger.
From the equipment that we found in storage the first floor probably contained three roller mills and bag stackers. Some of the equipment is still in place on the second and third floors and includes a Carl Haggenmacher rectangle sifter with 8 inlet spouts and I think 28 separations. This is a very interesting piece of equipment. There is also an enteleter, a bleaching agitator, two grain cleaners, triple asperator, S. Howels ribbon mixer, Norvell Hustler Sifter, wheat cleaner (disc separator), Forrester Brand Duster, Enrichment Mixer, triple asperating scourer, richardson scale, Middsmill flake buster, and several cyclones.
You'll notice a tower on the front. This contained a couple of bucket elevators and a high capacity receiving separator. At the top an auger was connected that extended out over the top of the 12 outside silos.