The Old Mill at T.R. Pugh Memorial Park
The Old Mill at T.R. Pugh Memorial Park serves as both an historical recreation of a 19th century water-powered grist (grain) mill and a park known for its charming setting on Lakewood Lake #2. With stunning scenery, the park has become a local favorite for photography. The two-story mill, featuring a five-ton water wheel, was the backdrop for the opening scenes of the movie Gone With The Wind. The initial site plan was conceived by prominent real estate businessman Justin Matthews, who is known for his contributions to the development of Park Hill and other neighborhoods in the North Little Rock and Sherwood area. Much of the sculpture was created by noted artist Dionicio Rodriguez in 1932.
Backstory and Context
Authentic structures located on the five acre site include the following: large millstones dating from 1823-1840; the iron gristmill on the first floor, from 1828, collected from the Cagle family of Pope County, Arkansas; iron scraps from an Arkansas River steamboat located inside the mill; original milestone markers from a road partially designed by Jefferson Davis, now part of the Trail of Tears National Historic Trail, located on the grounds.1
The wood framework inside the building, the giant water wheel, and all woodwork outside are sculpted concrete compositions of Dionicio Rodriguez. More of his faux bois works of art nearby include a large toadstool-shaped covered bench, a flower basket, and a unique hollow tree house, all located at the park on Lakewood Lake #3.