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Motor Mill

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completed 1867. 12 miles southeast of Elkader on route X30, parallel to the Turkey River
  • Motor Mill (David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim)

This stone mill set alongside a flowing river within a hilly forest projects a romantic image. The limestone gristmill is six stories tall and covered by a single gabled roof. It was designed by John Thompson, who was responsible for the design and the construction of a number of mills in this section of the state. The mill was to have been the center of the new town of Motor, which was laid out in 1845. Also still in existence nearby and dating from these early years are a livery stable, tavern, and two-story cooperage.

Writing Credits

David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim


What's Nearby


David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim, "Motor Mill", [Elkader, Iowa], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Iowa, David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim. New York: Oxford University Press, 1993, 96-96.

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