Mabry Mill Complex Repairs

Photo by Vicki Dameron

Mabry Mill Broken Wheel 2023.jpg

The broken water wheel at Mabry Mill on the Blue Ridge Parkway at milepost 171. Elements of Mabry Mill, including the cracked water wheel and aging shake roof, require repairs.

Mabry Mill is the beloved centerpiece of a collection of fascinating historical structures at milepost 171 in Virginia. In fact, the rustic mill reflected in the adjacent pond is said to be the most photographed scene on the Blue Ridge Parkway. 

The mill, including its roof and water wheel, are in dire need of repairs. Sediment must be removed from the pond to ensure the water wheel can turn. As the first step in the multifaceted rehabilitation of the historic site, we are asking for your help to replace the mill’s shake roof. With a gift, you can show your love for this popular destination loved by generations of Parkway visitors.

Help Mabry Mill


Mabry Mill background

The Mabry Mill area was purchased by the National Park Service in the late 1930s, and the mill was restored in 1945 when most of the farm buildings in the complex were moved to the site. In the 1990s, the wheel was completely disassembled and rebuilt. In 2014, the wheel was refurbished with new buckets and outer bands and the pond was dredged. Four years later, the mill flume was replaced and new shake roofs installed on historic buildings at the site, with support from private donors and the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation. Since that time, a weather event has damaged the mill wheel extensively.

The historic structure built by Ed and Lizzie Mabry in the early 1900s has undergone repairs numerous times since becoming part of the national park unit. When the mill was acquired, numerous repairs were undertaken. The following photos show the mill in 1942 without the waterwheel and pond and men working to construct a water wheel.

Mabry Mill in 1942 without the water wheel and pond

Water wheel construction at Mabry Mill in 1942

Photos courtesty of Blue Ridge Parkway/National Park Service

Milepost 176.2