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Dell Mill

Page history last edited by PBworks 12 years, 11 months ago
Dell mill was built around the beginning of the 19th Century. The present building, standing 300 yards North West of the main road at the Dell Bridge, is the original one apart from some minor improvements made over the years. It is believed that it was originally built as a distillery. In the 1820’s there was much illegal distilling being pursued and in order to effect a change Stewart MacKenzie of Seaforth, then owner of Lewis, decided to do something about it and by 1831 a distillery had been set up in North Dell. The road leading to the present Dell farm was known as ‘rathad an taigh-staile’ (Distillery Road). Ness whisky is reputed to have won the top prize at a competition in Liverpool against whiskies from Islay and other Highland distilleries. However, it is said that it was whisky which had been distilled illegally in Eoropie that had been entered and the Dell Enterprise was never very successful. It is not known for certain when the function changed, but it is known that in 1849, the buildings were improved and along with the surrounding land became a part of what is now Dell farm. As well as serving all the villages in Ness, the mill was also used by crofters from the villages on the West coast of Lewis as far south as Barvas.
 
 
 
It is not known who the first miller at Dell was, although local tradition mentions the ‘Muillear Glas’ as having been the miller in the early days. After him, Donald Munro was in charge for a while and in 1853 the MacFarqhuar family took over the running of the farm. The will was closed for the duration of World War 2. It reopened after the war ended and continued to be operated by the MacFarqhuars until 1954 when Donald Morrison took over the farm. He kept the mill going until 1970. In 1981 he leased Dell Mill to Comunn Eachdraidh Nis.
 
 
 
 
 
Info gathered from Commun Eachdraidh archive.

 

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