Caledon Woollen Mill

Location: Caledon

Caledon Beam Engine 2Although the former mill building was six storeys high all that remains today is a derelict engine house which previously housed an early example of the ‘Beam Engine’. At the time this was the only one in Ireland helping to power two water wheels when the river level was low. The Beam Engine was replaced by a more efficient water turbine in the 19th century.

The original corn mill was built in 1823 by James Du Pre Alexander then re-opened as a woollen mill by Messrs Sherrard Smith & Company in 1882. This had 40 looms and employed over 1,000 people manufacturing a wide range of different products including tweed, serge, blankets, costumes and flannel. From 1902 the mill was operated by Messrs Fulton and Company before closing in 1930. Unfortunately most of the original mill buildings were demolished in the 1980’s making way for the new Blackwater Drainage Scheme. The remains of an old bridge in an open field nearby are all that remain of a former mill race serving the mill.