37 • Dunn's Mill
Dunn's Mill is a reconstruction of a water-powered sawmill of the early 1800s. Its location on Richmond Creek, east of Richmond Hill Road and north of Richmond Road, is the approximate location of an earlier grist mill established by John Dunn.
Dunn's Mill was one of eleven mills that operated on Staten Island during the 1700s and 1800s. It was situated by the Richmond Creek, across the road from St. Andrew's Church. John Dunn purchased the land in 1795, and began operating his gristmill ca. 1800. The mill used power from the flow of water along Richmond Creek for the work of grinding grain. The creek was dammed up to form a millpond and the water was channeled through a mill race to turn a water wheel.
Dunn became a wealthy man from the profits accrued by the mill. He used some of those profits to purchase large tracts of land in the village of Richmond, owning much of the land immediately to the north of Richmond Road.
It appears that the mill ceased to operate not long after Dunn's death ca. 1826. It is believed that the gradual lessening of the water flow on Richmond Creek led to a lack of enough water power to run the mill year round, thus ending mill operations on the site.