THIRD SOUTH MILLS
In 1858, Bishop Charles B. Hancock constructed
a grist mill located at 300 South and 200 East (today’s address). This
was the second grist mill that he was involved in constructing. The
first one was located at approximately the location of the Intermountain
Farmers at the rear of the present day Getaway Furniture. The new mill
was known as the Hancock Mill for many years. It was built as a “make
work” project for the benefit of the poor.
Mill was a two-story log mill operated by an over-shot wheel run by
buckets eight feet long and eighteen inches deep.
In 1880, the grist mill was purchased by the Payson Cooperative
Institution. James Finlayson was the millwright. After a year it was
sold to Mr. Finlayson and became known as the Finlayson Mill. It
operated until 1901 when it was destroyed by fire. The Payson Electric
Light and Power Company had a dynamo, owned by Thomas E. Daniels Jr. and
George W. Hancock. During the daytime this power was used by the mill
to grind grain and from six P. M. until midnight furnished power to many
residents of the city.
In 1909, Thomas F. Tolhurst came to Payson to investigate a location
for a grist mill. He had gained milling experience at the mill located
in Leland near Spanish Fork. He built a rollar mill on the site of the
old Finlayson Mill. The new mill was equipped with the most modern
equipment that he could obtain. The mill could produce seventy-five
barrels of flour a day.
Mr. Tolhurst died in 1931 and
the mill was sold to Ammon Hermansen. By 1935, there was new large
capacity grain cleaning equipment installed in the mill. The mill was
closed in 1955 due to the illness of the miller, Richard Wilson. After
that Mr. Hermansen used the mill to store flour produced at the Nephi
mill that he operated.
The mill building and property
was later purchased by Elmo Dockstader. He had previously restored the
old Francom home on the northeast corner of 100 North and 500 East.
This home had been vacant for many years. He had also restored the old
Payson Substation on North Main into a residence. He had plans to
restore the old mill for new uses. He had converted a portion of the
old mill into living quarters but later sold the property without
finishing the restoration he had planned. The building was later torn
The old mill has become nothing but a memory to
many Payson residents. It was torn down several years ago and a
beautiful new home now occupies one of the important locations in the
history of Payson