At last it is Sunday again!!! After not being able to go out last Sunday I was really looking forward to our adventure this weekend. For awhile I thought I might not have either one of the boys or Brady to go adventuring with, but in the end, Sterling and Brady came along. Spencer had to work, so we missed him. I have a feeling that this sort of thing will happen with more and more frequency the older they get. They are really old enough to appreciate the places we go, but they are also old enough to appreciate that they have to make a living as well.
We got up, did what we had to do and I planned out the day. I knew that it had to be a short adventure because Rod wanted me home around noon. We actually could have been gone all day because he didn’t end up home until almost 5, but oh well!! So, I decided that we would explore Kemper County a little bit and maybe some of Neshoba county. Of course our first stop had to be Sciples Mill.
I had heard about this historic water mill and had even seen it’s image painted on a building in downtown De Kalb, so I thought it was time to see it in person. The boys and I loaded up and headed that way. I thought I would just plug the address into the gps in my truck and that would be that. Let me tell you, I am glad that Siri is around sometimes. My Siri can’t find witch’s graves, but it can find water mills…maybe he is trying to tell me something… Way out on a back road we finally came to a sign that pointed our way. After traveling down a long, narrow road with woods enclosing you on both sides the mill finally came into sight. It was not something that I expected to be sitting in a valley on the side of the road in Kemper County, Mississippi.
We parked and walked up the driveway to the mill, which was closed of course and began our investigation. On the side of the mill there were business cards from every type of person or business hung, some having been there for a long, long time; and there was a guest book sitting on a table underneath. All of us signed in and began to look around. Right behind us there was an open box really filled with cornmeal and grits with a sign telling how much each bag could be purchased for. At the end of this box there was a box to put the money in. I got a 2lb. bag of grits for $3. Can’t wait to try it. Imagine, grits made right here in Mississippi. For those of you who don’t know what grits are, please click here: Grits. I like them with butter and my husband likes them with lots of sugar and milk. Maybe it’s a Southern thing, but we all eat grits at least sometimes. I love the food down here, I could write for days on the food alone!!
After we got the grits we explored further. We actually walked around the back of the mill and there was a platform so that you could walk out right above the creek and where the water was running through. Let me tell you, I had a few reservations about walking out there…those boards looked old and even though the water wasn’t deep I really didn’t feel like ending up in it! In the end, the boards held and we walked out and looked around. It was really amazing to stand there and think about how someone stood in that same spot most likely, when the mill opened in 1790. That is a long time.
Out behind the mill there was a grove of bamboo with a path cut in it. I have no idea where the path led to since we only walked a little way down it. Along the path there were pieces of rusted parts of the mill just thrown here or there, kind of like a giant kid got tired of his toys and just left them where they lay. We didn’t go too far down the path, although it seemed to beckon, we weren’t sure it was part of the same property and weren’t exactly sure we should be there. The bamboo was thick and the grove seemed to go on for a long time. I still wonder what is at the other end of the path, we may have to revisit it to see.
The mill provided us a look at how things were made in 1790 as well as today, from what I understand it hasn’t changed all that much. Although I wish they had been open it was nice and peaceful. There were birds singing, the sound of the water rushing over the rocks and the wind blowing through the trees. The greens of the grass and trees were vibrant and the mill itself stood, a testament to what man can do if he sets his mind to it. Some things do last.
Our adventure at the mill didn’t end there, but that is a story for tomorrow.