Members of the public are invited to a cocktail party and presentation at The 1812 Farm in Bristol Mills on Tuesday, Oct. 16 at 6 p.m., about the proposed purchase and restoration of the Pemaquid Mill. It will be hosted by Damariscotta River Association and the newly formed Friends of Pemaquid Mill.
The last remaining sawmill in Bristol -at Pemaquid Falls – there were seven — is being sold by Hammond Lumber Co., which has closed its retail store on the site. The mill building is largely intact and was used to saw lumber into the 1960s. The mouth of the Pemaquid River has a significant run of alewives and elvers. The area was used by Native Americans for almost 5,500 years, and mills have been on the site since the mid-1600s.
A group of local residents, the Friends of the Pemaquid Mill, assisted by Damariscotta River Association and the Old Bristol Historical Society, want to buy the mill building on the saltwater side of Route 130, and improve the site to show the history of Bristol and how the mill worked. It is understood that the “fresh” side of the site is under contract and the new owner may provide access to kayaking on the river to Boyd Pond and the nature preserves.
Hammond Lumber Co. wants to close the sale by the end of October and funds need to be raised to make this happen. The asking price is $360,000 and $180,000 in cash and pledges has already been raised. Therefore, this is an urgent plea to raise the remaining funds and set the Pemaquid Mill on the path to a full restoration and a museum that explains the history of all of Bristol.
The 1812 Farm is donating the rental of the building and costs of preparing and serving the food; Castlebay will provide the music. Attendees will be asked to pay $25 per person for excellent food and a first drink.
The cocktail party is an opportunity to hear about the project; a presentation will make the project clear. It will be an opportunity to learn about its significance to the town, to meet friends, and to donate or pledge to the acquisition.
RSVP to DRA at 563-1393. An online portal will be available next week.