From its start as a sawmill in the 1840s, Hanford Mills grew to also include a gristmill, feed mill, woodworking shop, and hardware store. The story of Hanford Mills is one of ingenuity, innovation and entrepreneurship. Over time, the Hanfords generated power using waterwheels, water turbines, a steam power plant, gas engines, and a dynamo that generates electric power. Because it so effectively shows how mills, once a mainstay of rural towns, operate, Hanford Mills garnered a place on both the National and New York State Registers of Historic Places.
Feel the power as the cool waters of the Millpond rush over the 1926 Fitz Overshot Waterwheel. Listen as the Mill spins, rumbles, and whirs to life. Smell fresh cut lumber as logs are sawn on the water-powered sawmill. Explore the woodworking shop, and see historic machines creating the same products that were made at the Mill a century ago.