Built in 1889, as the Bluegrass Cordage Co., at the staggering cost of $100,000. The Mill was designed to consume 2 million pounds of hemp annually for the twine industry. The employees and the equipment were originally from Scotland. The factory was self-contained, including its own electricity plant, fire department, and Railroad Spurr to the main line. Listed as one of the largest factories of its type in America.
In 1923 the facility was purchased by W.J. Askew, father of Mrs. Emily Rawdon, at this time it was refitted and converted into a farm supply operation. At a time when coal was king, Georgetown had a total of ten coal dealers. G.M. Taylor (now Hilander Feed) company is the only survivor of this once very competitive business. Wool was also bought and sold in large quantities.
Born in 1859, the legendary G.M. Taylor made a name for himself stripping Bluegrass Seed. G.M. Taylor Seed was originally located on West Main Street and in later years moved to Maddox Street.
In 1941 W.J. Askew and G.M. Taylor formed a partnership to better serve Scott County, and at this time G.M. Taylor moved his business to it’s present location.
Hilander Feed Company bought the G.M. Taylor business in 1997. As a business moving into a legacy that traces back to beyond our time, we have done everything we can to preserve the historic value of the mill.
We have gone to different lengths in order to restore the mill to its former glory. We have repainted the once faded letters on the building that used to be advertisements. On the wall facing the railroad tracks, space was rented out to people to advertise. Using computers and photographs taken by Ed Bowen, we were able to make out the words and hired a contractor to repaint the ancient advertisement which reads “Rucker-Richards Hardware, Queensware (Silverware), Buggies, Harness, Farm Implements and Wagons.”
The original main area of business was the seed cleaning operation with customers all over the United States and parts of Europe. After sitting idle for years, the original antique cleaning equipment has been rebuilt and is in full use today thanks to Mr. Miller Levi.
The main building measures 42′ x 178′ and is made of 7 course common bond brick in the Victorian Industrial style. There is an old safe located in the office. The safe was built in 1888, a time when little trust was put in banks. Each door of the safe weighs 4,000 pounds with a total weight of 19,500 pounds.
Built over a century ago, the Mill has survived the change of times, a devastating fire, and the loss of it’s original founders. The Mill today, as in the past, is family owned and operated and continues to sell feed, seed, coal, lumber, fertilizer, hay, and straw.
Thank you for your support. Without you, our valued customer, this piece of Georgetown Kentucky history would be lost and never replaced.
-Hilander Feed Company