It’s the highest (adjusted) grossing film of all time and I’m about to set foot on the set. No I’m not in Hollywood, I’m in Little Rock Arkansas and the Old Mill from Gone With The Wind is now a park open for all to enjoy.
Before we get into the history of the park I’d like to tell you the story of this swan (?) I met who we will call Fred. Fred lives in the lake at the park and everyday would walk up to the street with his best friend Jane. They would greet people as they parked, honking away gleefully and posing for pictures with the kids. Then one day Jane was hit by a car. Sadly, she did not survive.
Now Fred returns every day to the spot where Jane died looking for his friend.
I was hanging out with Fred for a bit when an old lady walking her dog told me this story. I hope it’s not true but if it is at the sweetest thing I’ve ever heard.
Back to the Old Mill.
In 1933, developer Justin Matthews was contracted for the construction of a replica of an old water-powered grist mill. He did not set out to copy any preexisting mill but instead chose to design something that would fit the contour of the area.
He hired Dionicio Rodriguez, a Mexican-born sculptor who learned the craft of “Faux Bois” (Fake Wood) or “El Trabajo Rústico” (the Rustic Work), to create the scenery. Architect Frank Carmean designed the replica mill to look as if it were built a century earlier in the 1830s, while Rodriguez created the concrete details and surrounding objects.
Even though the park looks natural, and like it was constructed with vines and bark, most of the decorations are concrete. The park is decorated with sculptures of toadstools, tree stumps, and a tree branch-entwined bridge that connects the mill to the rest of the park.
Closest Supercharger Little Rock AK 16 mi
The Old Mill 3800 Lakeshore Dr, North Little Rock, AR 72116