Remembering the Red Mills & Falls of Mahopac
Some history on the names Red Mills and Mahopac Falls
According to Charles A. Raymond’s 1976 Historic Carmel, Mahopac and Mahopac Falls: a bicentennial profile, the region’s first mill, “Kirkham Mill”, was built around 1740 located in what we now refer to as The Red Mills Historic District in Mahopac Falls. A larger mill was built around 1760 and was originally in use to make plaster for use with brick, stone, or wood frame buildings. At the time of the American Revolution, it became a grist mill and was grinding grain to feed and supply Continental Troops. Later, a carding mill and saw mill were built near the old mill, each depending on channels of water from the local lakes. At one point, the mills were painted red and from then on the area became known as “The Red Mills.”
By 1881, New York City had secured many farms, mills, and water rights for its reservoir system and razed the largest old red mill leaving only the “falls” from the millpond that had supplied the driving force of water for the mill wheel. At this time, the name “Mahopac Falls” came into use. By 1900, the falls were removed to re-channel the outlets of water coming from Kirk Lake and Lake Mahopac.
Charles A. Raymond’s book on Historic Carmel, Mahopac and Mahopac Falls can be found in the Putnam County Historian’s Office Research Library as well as local history collections of Brewster, Carmel and Kent Public Libraries.
The Town of Carmel and the Red Mills Historic District Committee will hold their annual Independence Day Concert on July 4, 2019, from 6:30 – 8:00 pm in the gazebo at Red Mills Historic Park, Route 6N and Hill Street in Mahopac Falls where the Historic District Celebrates the 4th!
Courtesy of Carmel Historian Jim Meyer, we’re pleased to share that news of the Independence Day Concert on July 4, 2019 at the Red Mills Historic District. It will feature an outdoor concert of patriotic music by the Norm Hathaway Big Band with a reenactment performance by the 2nd NY Regiment Brigade of the American Revolution. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs and blankets and enjoy. In the event of rain, the concert will be held on July 5th at 6:30 pm. The event is free to the public and is sponsored by Tompkins Mahopac Bank. For further information call Jim Meyer, Town of Carmel Historian, at 914-844-6050 or Allan Warneke, Chairman Red Mills Historic District Committee, at 845-628-5705.
Image credits: The Old Red Mill circa 1881, courtesy of Judy Agor from the Putnam County Historian’s Collection
Image credits: The Red Mills historic marker and gazebo at the Red Mills Historic District Park from the Putnam County Historian’s Collection