14 Jan 1812 - first public water mill

On 14 January 1812 Governor Macquarie opened the first public water mill in the Colony.

The water mill was built by former convict Thomas West on land at Barcom Glen, between Woolloomooloo and Sydney Common and was used to grind grain. The mill operated for about 20 years after which time the water supply proved to be inadequate.

This Mill is turned by a Wheel of 18 feet diameter, and fortunately commanding a good head of water is capable of grinding upwards of Four and a half Bushels of Wheat within an hour.

The Sydney Gazette

In December 1813, Thomas West received a conditional pardon and a cow for erecting the water mill.

Source: McL., D.C. (1929). In 1812. Old Sydney Water Mill. The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW: 1842 – 1954). Barcom

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