This millstone is believed to be from the gristmill built by William Smith in 1871 on the Big
Blue River south of Beaver Crossing. W. J. Thompson took over the mill in 1873, and it
continued to operate until about 1917.
Gristmills were an essential industry for the settlement of Nebraska, processing locally-grown
grain into flour, cornmeal, and feed. There may have been as many as 160 water-powered mills
in Nebraska in 1890, before their numbers began to decline.
Nebraska State Historical Society
Beaver Crossing Chamber of Commerce
City Park, Beaver Crossing