Journal of Northeast Texas Archeology
The Alley's Mills town site was discovered' while examining a timber tract on Alley's Creek for a harvest cut by International Paper. A deep, rock-lined well, and a profusion of handmade bricks was discovered on a small knoll overlooking Alley's Creek, a tributary of Big Cypress Creek (Figure 1. Also found on the knoll were pieces of whiteware pottery, English blue transfer china, square nails, and glass fragments.
I contacted a local historian, Mr. Fred McKenzie, about the site. We walked over the site, which he had discovered several years ago. In the creek bottom, he pointed out an earthen structure that had been built around 1838 as a mill race to divert water to a grist mill wheel. The mill race is a levee-like structure, about one meter wide and two meters high, and runs in a NW-SE direction for about 800 meters. A wooden sluice was built on top of the race to direct the water flow. At the end of the mill race, under the surface of the water, is a large hand cut beam about one meter long with regularly spaced hand-hewn notches. The old roadbed of the Jefferson-Pittsburg road is visible across the tract, running directly past the knoll on which the brickwork was found and crossing the creek at the end of the mill race where the mill is located (see Figure 1).
Jones, Mary C.
"Alley's Mills: A 19th Century Mill Town,"
Index of Texas Archaeology: Open Access Gray Literature from the Lone Star State: Vol. 1993
, Article 14.
Available at: https://scholarworks.sfasu.edu/ita/vol1993/iss1/14
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