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Middletown, IN And Its Flour Mills


(Excerpts Taken From 1884 Merchants & Manufacturing Report)

   This pleasantly situated village is situated in Fall Creek Township, Henry County, and is located on Fall Creek and on the line of the Pittsburgh, Cincinnati & St. Louis Railroad, and 12 miles northwest of New Castle, the county seat.
   The town was originally laid out by Jacob Koontz, and town lots sold on the public square December 25, 1829. Among the first settlers of this township may be mentioned, 1828, John Hart, Charles Williams, David Davis, Thomas Gardner, Abraham Thomas and Solomon Bowers. In 1830 Nathan Ripley and Nathan Burr settled in Middletown. A tanner and a currier were among the first business started here by Mr. Burr. The first store was started in 1831 by Jacob Koontz and another by Joshua Willet.
   The first wagon shop was started by James Hamilton in 1833. The first house built in the town was by Elias Parker, in 1830.
   There were only thirty votes polled at the election for Fall Creek Township in August 1830. As an indication of the growth of this place we give a glance at the present Middletown of 1884, which now contains nearly 1,000 inhabitants, and many fine business buildings and private residences. There are three dry goods stores; four grocery stores; two drug stores; two restaurants; three millinery houses; one furniture store; one undertaking establishment; two wagon and carriage shops; two shoe shops; one merchant tailor; two barber shops; one first class hotel, The Tykle House; one lodge of F. & A. M.; One lodge of I. O. O. F.; One post of G. A. R.; a good graded school; One M. E. Church; One Christian church and one U. B. Church; A flouring Mill; two saw mills; express and telegraph offices. The Tykle Block is one of which would be a credit to any city.
   MIDDLETOWN MILLS: J. C. Daniels, Proprietor.
   In setting forth the various industries that contribute so largely to the agricultural and commercial wealth of a state, we find the milling interest occupying a leading position, both with regard to the amount of capitol labor employed and the relations they sustain to the farmer by furnishing markets for the products of his fields. We find Mr. John C. Daniels, the proprietor of the above named mill, deservedly occupying a prominent position in this important industry. His 20 years experience in the business, and giving it his entire attention and personal supervision, together with the latest improved machinery and the utilization of the new process, enables him to furnish as good flour as any miller in this section of the country. He is also prepared to pay the highest market price in cash for good wheat.
   The mills of which we write were erected by John Swope and are 48 x 33 feet in dimensions and three and one-half stories in height. Mr. Swope was succeeded by the firm of Painter and Coffman, who controlled the business until 1878, when they in turn were succeeded by the present proprietor. Mr. Daniels is prepared to do both merchant and custom work. A fifty-horse power engine supplies the motive power. Three competent employees find constant work in the establishment, and the trade of the mills is rapidly increasing. Mr. Daniels is a native of Indiana and is a gentleman of recognized business ability, well qualified by long and practical experience for the position he occupies.
   HONEY CREEK MILLS: Joseph Fry, Proprietor.
   These mills are 40x30 feet in dimensions, four stories in height and are adapted to both steam and water power. The engine is of 25-horse power and the water wheel is one James Laffel's celebrated Turbines. The mill was erected in 1845 by Eli Caylor. Some time thereafter Mr. Samuel Fry, father of the present proprietor, became the owner. Mr. Joseph Fry has held possession since 1871. In 1879 the mills were remodeled, improved and enlarged and two run of stone were added.
   The mill is equipped with all the modern improvements essential to the manufacture of fine flour and feed and the new process was recently introduced. The capacity of the mill is about 40 barrels of flower in 24 hours, and first class work in every particular is fully guaranteed. Mr. Fry is a practical miller of lifelong experience, his father having been in charge of the Honey Creek Mills for a period of 26 years. Its trade is located over a wide range of territory and is gradually and permanently increasing, as a consequence of the liberal and reliable business policy pursued.

2007 UEB


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