Since the 1700s, the Saddle Rock Grist Mill has played a vital role in the growth and prosperity of Great Neck. Many farms on the peninsula grew grain, corn and other produce, and much of it was ground at the mill and shipped across Long Island Sound to eager customers in New York City.
Back in the1980s, the grist mill was a favorite destination for elementary school children who were fascinated as they watched the great wheel turn and crush the dried kernels. They were excited to bring home little bags of ground corn.
But as the mill fell into disrepair, it was deemed unsafe. The grist mill is owned by Nassau County and our historical society has been advocating for and working with the county for its repair and restoration.
Former President of the Great Neck Historical Society Alice Kasten has a wealth of information about the mill’s past and as a retired science teacher thoroughly enjoys sharing historical information with adults as well as children.
Her presentation will also touch on the old Great Neck farming families who owned large tracts of land here, the Allens, Cutters, Schencks, Bakers, and Udalls. All are familiar now as street names, but in their era, they were dynamic, generous leaders of our community with many of them donating land for public spaces.
Howard Kroplick, co-President of the Roslyn Landmark Society and president of the Long Island Motor Parkway Preservation Society, another ardent historian, will be discussing the process of restoring the Roslyn Grist Mill which actually was lifted last summer to protect it from rising waters.
While the work there is not completed, Kroplick will talk with us offering practical advice for ensuring that our tidal grist mill survives and can again be opened to children and adults, allowing them to step into our community’s past.
We have invited former Nassau County Legislator Ellen Birnbaum to attend so that we can recognize her for her efforts to ensure Nassau County’s support and funding for restoration. We have also invited our new Nassau Country Legislator Mazi Pilip to attend so that she can become more informed about the importance of continuing the efforts to restore the mill.
Please sign up for this zoom presentation by Jan. 17 to insure a spot for you and your family at https://bit.ly/SaddleRockGristMill.