Old Red Mill

Vermont's Old Red Mill is an iconic image, but the image becomes a post card type of shot by including elements of good composition, such as leading lines (the river), contrasting colors and the rule of thirds.

A great day-trip destination that includes something of interest for nearly everyone is Jericho’s Old Red Mill, about an hour from Stowe and 30 minutes from Smugglers' Notch.

A national historic site, the Old Red Mill is one of the most photographed spots in Vermont. Built some time prior to 1855 and substantially renovated in 1885, the mill towers above the Browns River, which crashes through a rock gorge next to the mill. Also known as Chittenden Mills, in honor of Vermont’s first governor, this imposing structure exudes history.

The mill serves as home to the Jericho Historical Society, and a museum inside includes original milling machinery and the Snowflake Bentley exhibit. Born in 1865, Wilson Bentley was an area farmer with a passion for snowflakes.

In 1865, Bentley began exploring photomicrography, using the technique to become the first person to take pictures of individual snowflakes. In his lifetime, Bentley thereafter took photographs of 5,000 snowflakes and discovered that none of them was exactly alike. (Check out the snowflake website at snowflakebentley.com.)

If you tire of history, the mill also houses the Old Mill Craft Shop, which sells regional crafts and snowflake items. The mill is open Thursday to Saturday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.

For the more active-minded, check out the river gorge and the 12 acres of woods and trails that extend behind the mill. Follow one trail along the river for several minutes and you will find swimming holes, picnic spots, and waterfalls.

Getting there: To reach the Old Red Mill from the Cambridge area, take Route 15 through Underhill to Jericho Village. From Stowe, take Route 108 through Smugglers' Notch to Route 15. There is ample parking next to the mill. On your return trip, vary your route by taking the scenic Pleasant Valley Road, easily found in the center of Underhill Village.

Reliable news and information is vitally important. Local advertising has been affected by the COVID-19 crisis but the Vermont Community Newspaper Group remains committed to its responsibility to serve its communities. Your communities. With some assistance from loyal readers, community organizations, foundations and other funders, we hope to keep reporters on the job keeping you informed. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to our local journalism fund. Thank you for your support.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexual language.
Don't threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be proactive. Use the "Report" link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.