Historical Albion Michigan
By Frank Passic

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Any photos not otherwise credited are from the personal collection of Frank Passic, Albion Historian.

STONE MILL

Morning Star, April 7, 1996, pg. 5

A few weeks ago we saw workers loading up old office fixtures, paneling, and other items in front of City Bank & Trust Company and hauling it away. Included was “air raid” shelter materials from the early 1960s, when a nuclear attack was imminent during the Cuban Missle Crisis. For those who don’t know it, City Bank once rented office space upstairs, and the building contains an elegant tile and marble foyer and staircase which is now inaccessible due to the automatic teller machine at the entrance.

The City Bank building was once the Stone Mill erected in 1845 by Jesse Crowell. A “tail race” of water ran behind the mill to supply water power to turn the grinding wheel. The mill ran constantly, and the firm built up a flour trade which was known nationwide. A new brick elevator was erected in 1881 just to the north. The firm eventually became known as the W. H. Nelson Grain, Flour & Feed firm. It discontinued business in the early 1910s.

The original Jesse Crowell Stone Mill was sold to the Commercial & Savings Bank, which remodeled the structure in 1916 into its new headquarters. The north elevator was sold to a cooperative, and was moved 132 feet east at 6 inches a day in August 1917, and today is Albion Elevator. Imagine moving that large, heavy brick building today!

From our Historical Notebook this week we present a classic photograph facing east of the Stone Mill on the right, and the Albion elevator building on the left while it was still on Superior Street. Today the latter is the site of the Bohm Theater. If you look closely, notice the style of the street lights. One of the projects on this year’s agenda is to install new streetscape lighting in downtown Albion in keeping with an historical theme. The only remaining lights of the style pictured here are in front of the Masonic Temple on W. Center St. today.


Stone Mill and the Albion Elevator Building

Next: ALBION OPERA HOUSE


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All text copyright, 2013 © all rights reserved Frank Passic

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