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Local History

Horizontal Water Mill

Mill Stone at Kilmokea

 A mill stone and a wooden flume were found in Kilmokea in the 1960's during drainage work. These were part of a Horizontal Water Mill which were used in Ireland from about the 7th century. They were one of the first automatic machines used here. They are called Horizontal Mills because the wooden wheel which provided the power was layed flat in the water. Most mills in Wexford are of the vertical type or upright like Foulksmills and Castlebridge.The mill was probably used by all the local people in the community as grain growing was always part of Irish farming. It was an easier way to grind the corn than using the quern stone as much more could be ground with the mill. 
The stone found was the upper millstone and measures 68cm (27inches) in diameter. It has circular grooves from the centre outwards.

Elm Flume at Kilmokea

The flume has been carbon dated to around 1279.As there was once a monastery here in Kilmokea it's possible that the mill was used by the monks.The water came from the stream and was directed by the flume on to the mill wheel.As the flow of water increases the wheel turns faster and its axle then turned the upper millstone. Below this stone was the lower stone which didn't turn.The grain was fed in from the hopper and ground between the two stones.

The Hopper with the millstones(Heritage Park,Wexford)

Before the corn was ground it had to be dried but there is no evidence of a Corn-drying Kiln in the area.

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