Bailes’ Old Mill

Bailes’ Old Mill, commonly known as the Old Mill of Guilford, is an operational grist mill located near Oak Ridge in Guilford County, North Carolina.

Pictured here is the west wall of the mill, to which a 12-spoked wood and iron-rimmed wheel (a 24′ x 4′ Fitz overshot water wheel) is attached.

Water Wheel
Water wheel, Bailes’ Old Mill

Water to power the wheel comes from a 10-acre mill pond (holding pond) about 500 yards upstream and west of the mill. Water spilling over the dam is pictured below.

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Dam, Bailes’ Old Mill

The creek, which was dammed to create the mill pond, runs beneath the road.

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Creek, Bailes’ Old Mill

Originally, an overhead wooden open race, or flume, delivered the water from the dam to the wheel. However, the rerouting of North Carolina State Route 68 in 1932 resulted in a paved road between the dam and the mill. A 26″ diameter steel pipe running under the road replaced the overhead flume to carry the water.

Water Wheel4
Bailes’ Old Mill

The interested reader is invited to visit the webpage of the Old Mill of Guilford at for more information.