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Past and Present of Livingston County
Volume 1. History
by Major A. J. Roof. 1913
On account of the great distances the early pioneers were obliged to travel to reach a power mill, many of the settlers used the pestle and mortar, these being improvised by burning a circular cavity in the top of some hardwood stump, shaped something after the pattern of a milk crock. In this cavity the corn was placed and pounded into meal or cracked for hominy by the use of hardwood pestle or iron wedge. But it was not long before a power mill was built on Shoal creek, about where the town of Dawn now stands, by Joshua Whitney. A mill was also built on Medicine creek by Mr. Cox, latter known as the Slagle mill. Then some few miles northwest of Spring Hill James Black started a horse mill and near Utica on the west fork of Grand river, Samuel Todd erected what is believed to be the first water mill in the county.