The History Of Muncaster Mill

Picture

A photo of what is left of Muncaster Mill near the Smith Center in Derwood

Muncaster Mill, less commonly known as Highway 115, is a road that starts at Woodfield Rd. in Gaithersburg and extends to Norbeck Rd. in Rockville.

​The following passage can be found on the Montgomery Parks website:

“The unusually picturesque frame grist mill (where grains like wheat and corn were ground into flour) with a steep gambrel roof and stone piers, was part of the adjacent “Milton” farm, home of the Robertson and Muncaster families.

Muncaster Mill was built in the early 1800s and closed in 1925 due to competition from modern milling practices. It was burned to its foundation in 1935. There was a large dam about a half mile upstream marking the start of the headrace. Traces may be visible upstream from Kengla House.

Joseph Elgar built the original mill, which was later sold to E. Muncaster, who operated it until 1878. George E. White leased it from Muncaster and operated it until 1920, when William Dove took it over. The design of Muncaster Mill, recorded before it burned, was used to restore Pierce Mill, the only remaining mill on Rock Creek (in Washington).

At one time, as many as 12 other mills operated along Rock Creek but most disappeared before the Civil War. Muncaster Mill was the last mill to operate in what is now Rock Creek Park. During its lifetime, the mill served 30–50 farmers in the area. There were three millstones, each designed for a specific grinding job. One ground unshelled corn for animal feed; one coarsely ground wheat, barley, and oats; and one ground fine flour.

For many years, there was also a sawmill, operated by a water turbine. The sawmill foundation was about 75 feet west of the grist mill site. The old miller’s house stood on Emory Lane near Muncaster Mill Road.”

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