- Associated Press - Tuesday, September 8, 2015

MARYVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is working on a project to restore two historic mills in preparation for the National Park Service’s centennial celebration in 2016.

Crews recently replaced a roof at the John P. Cable Grist Mill in Cades Cove and are beginning work to replace the drive belt on the turbine of the Mingus Mill in North Carolina, The Daily Times (https://bit.ly/1KYCNa2 ) reported. The $35,440 project is being paid for out of public and private funds.

“We’re really excited to be able to do this for the centennial,” Historic Preservation Program Manager Randy Hatten said. “A big shout out for the Friends of the Smokies and Great Smoky Mountains Association for partnering with us to be able to accomplish this. We wouldn’t be financially able to accomplish it without assistance. The public’s donations really do make a difference.”

Cable Mill is undergoing further renovation where rotten cribbing under the flume is being replaced. At Mingus Mill, workers will replace the lumber lining of the waterway which feeds the mill’s water wheel

Hatten said restoring the historic structures requires skilled workers.

“We’ve got some very experienced craftsmen that work here in the park that have been doing this type of work for more than 20 years,” Hatten said. “They’ve been through the Historic Preservation Training Center, operated by the National Park Service, where they learn to hone their craft.”

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