Bradley Gristmill | Leon County, FL | c.1920s
Back in 1922, L.E. Edward Bradley Senior built a grist mill in this modest barn on his property. Back then, grist mills were important features to small rural communities who depended upon this kind of facility to grind their corn. And Bradley’s grist mill was no different as local farmers came to depend upon this place.
In local tradition, community members would all show up to Bradley’s on Saturday mornings to grind up what they had harvested the previous week. At that time, there was no other mill in the area so you can imagine how important this place was to the people it served.
In 1927, the Bradley Family opened a country store (still in operation today) on site where they eventually became famous for selling the corn grits that were milled in this building. Known of their extra coarse grain, locals love these grits and will travel far and wide to pick up a bag.
The building and grist mill has continually served its community for 100 years, but by the 2000s, had fallen into disrepair. Luckily, in 2012, The Bradley Family and other locals got together to restore the building and the final result is what you see pictured above.
I hope that their efforts to maintain this place will mean that locals can still pick up fresh ground corn grits here in 100 years from now!
If you’d like to visit Bradley’s Store for yourself, check out their website HERE.