Historic 1870 Grist Mill Open for Weekend Guided Tours

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Capitalizing on the beauty of the autumn landscape of the Buffalo National River, the National Park Service offers free ranger-guided tours of the Boxley Grist Mill on Arkansas 43 in Boxley Valley (Newton County) each weekend in October.

Boxley_Valley_Grist_Mill

These tours run from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays and last about 30 minutes.

From 1870 until the 1950s, this grist mill was handed down through generations of the Villines family and was an important part of community life. Now, in the 21st century, the mill is managed under a partnership between the National Park Service and the Gorgas Science Foundation. The tours are provided in partnership with the NPS, Buffalo National River Partners, and the Foundation.

Entrance to the mill does require climbing several steps and  a short walk from the parking area is necessary to reach the building.  The closest restroom, picnic area, and water are located northeast of the mill at the Lost Valley Day Use Area.

New to the tour this year is the addition of the “Fishing Cabin” behind the Clyde Villines house near the millpond. The cabin represents one of the early efforts to develop the post-World War II tourism industry in the Ozarks by providing a place for tourists to stay and fish for catfish in the millpond. It has been restored by the Gorgas Foundation to its 1940s-era condition with many original and period furnishings.

For more information, or to schedule a group tour for 10 or more people, please contact the Steel Creek Visitor at 870-861-2570  or email [email protected].