Saturday, July 20, 2019

Brock's Mill House and Pond Trenton, NC

Picturesque mill house located on a 132 acres of pond which winds back into areas with abundant wildlife and indigenous plants. The mill was built in the 1700s and was used to generate electricity for the town of Trenton and was later used to grind corn. The grounds are open at all times to those who want to stop by and take a walk or get a picture of the cypress trees hanging full of moss and the geese swimming on the pond. Did you know that the Brock Mill dates back to the 1700’s when the first dam was constructed by hand? The millpond itself is fed by underground springs and by Crooked Run Creek with its headwaters in the Hofmann Forest. Only a small portion of the 133 acres is actually seen from Highway 58. The total area of the pond is 122 acres of water and 11 acres of land including small islands. The outlet for the pond drains the water into the Trent River southeast of the town of Trenton. The depth of the pond is 30 feet in several spots but the average depth is 12 feet.

According to research conducted by Stella Virginia Heritage, there was a Revolutionary War deed to a pond in this area around 1738 or 1739. In 1779 records show a sale of the property by Richard Sharp and Elizabeth Reynolds of Craven County to Lewis Bryan. In 1796 the property was sold again to Anthony Hatch and became known as Hatch’s Mill. During the next several years, ownership changed several times, however the name of Hatch’s Mill remained constant. In 1834, James McDaniel purchased the property and changed the name to McDaniel’s Mill . This name also remained through several other owners. In 1899 J.P. Brogden sold it to W. H. Hammond and Furnifold Brock. One year later, Mr. Brock bought out his partner’s share and deeded the property to his wife, Myrtle Foscue Brock. When Mr. Brock purchased the property, the gristmill was on site.

This dated back to 1861. Goods being produced at the mill included corn meal, grits and cracked corn for livestock or chicken feed. The sawmill operated on the site until the early 1940’s. In 1917, Mr. Brock installed a turbine generator to provide electricity for the town of Trenton. Late in the afternoon, the turbine was turned on making power for Trenton’s residents. At 10 pm the lights blinked twice signifying that the power would be cut off in fifteen minutes. This service continued until Tidewater Power Company purchased the franchise. As you can see the mill property has a rich history and it is a major focal point for Jones County. Because of this the county is looking to determine what to do with the property. As you ride by the mill think about what you would like to see on the property, a nature trail, canoe/kayak trail, a visitor’s center, fishing, a photo destiny, a working mill, etc. We need your help on this!


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks and I'd like to get a canoe and fish the 122 acres of water. I never see anyone there and I bet there are many just waiting to be caught. :)

  2. Enjoyed the history of the mill & pond in Trenton. I married into an old Jones County family and recognize family names of several branches.

    1. Thanks are there any Brocks or Koonces?

    2. No but I have a Jones Co history written in the 20th century that mentions the Koonces (And other German names). My mother-in-law was a Parker & Duval with alit of other names that are still common throughout eastern NC. she was proud to be descended from French Hugenots.

    3. Thanks and I imagine it was the one by Harriet in 1987..?

      "The Koonce family of North Carolina originated in the Palatinate, the region along the upper Rhine River in Southern Germany, which supplied a large proportion of the Swiss and German colonists who founded the town of New Bern, NC in 1710 under the leadership of Baron Christopher De Graffenreid. The founder of the family in North Carolina was Johann Christian Kunitzsli, which was anglicized to John Koonce. John, his wife, and six children, survived the hardships of the voyage to America only to encounter worst misfortunes upon arrival in Virginia in April 1710.

      On my right sidebar "My sixth great grandfather, his wife, and five of his six children were killed in battle with the Tuscarora Indians at Core Creek, NC"