Brief: Senior Center’s Event Highlights Colvin Run Mill

Brief: Senior Center’s Event Highlights Colvin Run Mill

The metro area’s only surviving operational 19th century water-powered mill—Colvin Run Mill—highlights the Great Falls Senior Center (GFSC) June event. The Friends of Colvin Run Mill and Colvin Run Mill (CRM) are partnering with the Senior Center as co-hosts.

Mike Henry, CRM site manager, will provide historical context to the manufacture of flour in early America. Guests will hear CRM’s history and its reconstruction and preservation. They also will be invited on a guided tour of the mill.

The manufacture of flour has been fundamental to sustaining life and culture since the hunter-gatherer period of human civilization. Native Americans in the Great Falls region prepared meal from corn for their daily diet. When Europeans arrived in the 17th century, they brought grist milling technology with them and grew wheat and corn. The first mills were small and primitive. Ruins left by these pioneers can be found in the community: Symond's Mill on Hickory Run and the Old Mill on Nichols Run.

The Colvin Run Mill opened for milling in 1811. Commercial milling ended at the site in the mid-1930s and then the mill was abandoned. Citizen interest inspired the Fairfax County Park Authority to acquire the property in the mid-1960s. The mill re-opened to visitors as a museum in 1972.

The June 4 event takes place at the Mill on Colvin Run Road, 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Lunch will be served; a modest contribution is appreciated. Lunch will include freshly baked cornbread made from the mill’s cornmeal.

The June event sponsor is Loza Dental of Great Falls, a family dental practice at 737 Walker Road.

Reservations are a must: e-mail Joyce Trickett at or call 703-887-5772. Guests who require transportation to attend should call Gene or Maddie McCabe at 703-438-0810.