Kerr Mill

Mill ToursAltText

The mill is located at Sloan Park and is open to the public select weekends and special events for tours.  Teachers can call 704-637-7776 and make reservations for school group tours. There is no fee. 


  • 1701 - John Lawson, Surveyor General of the Province of North Carolina, declared he has seen no other land that exceeds the land of Rowan County.
  • 1749 - The Cathey settlement is established on the head waters of Second Creek by James Cathey.
  • 1753 -  Rowan County is Established and land is deeded to the congregation for "ye lower meeting house."  Later to become Thyatira Presbyterian Church.
  • 1762 -  Millbridge community is settled.
  • 1794 - Doctor Samuel McCorkle opened the Zion Parnassus Academy, the first normal school in the United States, near Thyatira Church.
  • 1823 -  Joseph Kerr constructs Kerr Mill on his 1500 acre plantation located between Sills and Cathey’s Creeks.
  • 1861-1865 -  Doctor Samuel Kerr, son of Joseph Kerr, strongly supports the Confederacy and by the end of the war Dr. Kerr was destroyed financially.
  • 1865-1872 - Kerr Mill operates on a small scale to serve the needs of the small group of tenant farmers who were working the run down and neglected fields of the Kerr Plantation.
  • 1872 - James Samuel McCubbins purchases 593 acres, the Kerr Mansion, and the mill for $8,140.
  • 1876 - James McCubbins operates Kerr Mill using an undershot wheel which was fed by a long mill race and canal.
  • 1887 - McCubbins and his partner, John Harrison, complete retooling of Kerr Mill to a roller mill powered by a steam engine.
  • 1895 - John W. Page acquires complete title to Kerr Mill.
  • 1900 - Pleasant Owen Tatum purchases the mill from John Page and operates the mill until 1908.
  • 1908 - James Wiseman Sloan purchases Kerr Mill for $3,000.
  • 1925 - Kerr Mill is now powered by a Bessemer diesel engine.
  • 1927 - James W. Sloan sells Kerr Mill to his nephew, James Andrew Sloan, for "one dollar and other valuable considerations."