Off the banks of Roaring Fork Road dwells one of Gatlinburg’s most deeply rooted treasures - the long-established and untouched Ely's Mill.
Erected in 1925 by Yale law school graduate-turned printer, Andrew Jefferson Ely, the mill served as both mill and community advocate for local craftsmanship, a tradition that can be seen today in the Mill’s inventory of locally crafted items and Appalachian commodities you haven’t seen since you were a kid. For the motorists who have followed the winding-stretch of Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail, Ely’s Mill is an oasis that easily quenches the need for a cold beverage or a shaded spot to stretch one’s legs.
For those with time and appetite for a good historical tale, visitors can follow owner and granddaughter Ruth Wellborn into the heart of the mill, where a curated exhibition reveals the mill's intricate grip on its own place in Gatlinburg history. Chronicled through artifacts and paper archives, you get a fascinating account of the Mill’s founder hired local craftsmen to build the two water-wheel mills that would power the Mill’s two primary enterprises, furniture-making and grain milling.
Ely’s Mill invokes a bygone era belonging to a time when Gatlinburg was a young logging town, and the folks at Ely’s Mill have created cozy rustic lodgings so guests can experience that old-fashioned charm, all while enjoying the comforts of a modern vacation. The Mill offers several one to two-bedroom cabins complete with a full kitchen, woodburning stove, comfy furnishings and plenty of room to kick back and relax. Some lodgings also include in their repertoire of amenities: a washer/dryer, cable TV, DVD player, internet and charcoal grill.
Surrounded by lush greenery and the mossy banks of a cool mountain stream, the Mill’s natural beauty offers the perfect backdrop for an outdoor engagement or wedding. Couples on the hunt for that perfect rustic venue for their nuptial day can take advantage of the Mill’s romantically lit pavilion or reserve the area for a private engagement photoshoot.
Find out more information on Ely’s Mill unique history, goods and services by visiting their website or making it a must-see spot on your next trip to Gatlinburg.