logs at the restored Hope Mill.
Hope Mill is a water-powered sawmill on the Indian River near
Peterborough, Ontario. Built around 1835, it was originally
a carding and fulling mill, but also served as a grist and shingle
In 1892, an appendage was added to the side of the building
for a large circular saw to cut logs, and two new water-driven
turbines were added for power. The main building housed a wood
lathe, a sticker (a four-sided planer that produces tongue-and-groove
joints), a power-fed rip saw, a bandsaw, a planer and equipment
used to sharpen saw blades. There was a forge in one corner.
Jack Hope operated the commercial mill until 1966, when he sold
the property to the Otonabee Region Conservation Authority (ORCA).
With volunteer help and government funding, it was converted
into a demonstration sawmill for educational purposes. The second
floor, originally living quarters for the miller's family, was
converted into a museum to display antique woodworking tools.
The conservation authority used the mill to build picnic tables
and other items for its various conservation and campground
In the early 1990s, after government funding was cut, ORCA could
no longer afford to operate the facility or make repairs, so
the site was closed. Vandals and raccoons took over the premises.
The antique tools were moved to the Peterborough Centennial
Museum & Archives for safekeeping.