News Flash: Final Bridge plans under review

Motor Mill Bridge
Final Plans for the Motor Mill Bridge are being reviewed!

April 5th: Bids sent out
April 19th: Pre-bidders meeting
May 5th: Bid opening
May 8th: Recommendation to the
County Conwervation
Board for hiring

Check out Tim Engelhardt, Clayton County Conservation Director’s, update on Conservation Magazine Audio Report

Motor Mill Foundation members are currently raising matching funds to replace the Motor Mill Bridge. The new bridge will look the same as the 1895 iron bridge, raised by 4 feet, and will be open to vehicle traffic.

Projected completion is the fall of 2012.


 View the plans!

Grants have been secured from:
FEMA $432,427, REAP $463,000,
UMGC $20,000 and
Iowa Great Places $33,000.
Total amount of grant
funds secured: $948,427.

An additional $500,000 in matching funds is still needed; your donation would help take us over the river!!
More information about the Capital Fund Campaign is available here.

Donations to the Motor Mill Foundation, a 501c3 organization or the Clayton County Conservation Board are 100% tax deductible.

Motor Mill Bridge & Building Restoration Project


Motor Mill Bridge ProjectDuring the flood event of 2008, the north span of the Motor Mill Bridge was destroyed. As a result, FEMA allowed funding to replace the north span of the bridge to the pre-disaster state of the bridge.

The work includes tuck pointing the north, center and south stone abutments and the north bridge span. Funding was included to raise the bridge by four feet, placing it above the high water mark.

The Conservation Board and the Motor Mill Foundation have started the process to raise additional funding to complete the south span and make the bridge open to cars, pickups and pedestrian traffic.

The preliminary design has been completed and is in the process of review. The current design is a pin connected Pratt through truss bridge using modern materials.

Estimated completion is summer 2012.

Fund Raising Campaign

The Motor Mill Foundation and the Clayton County Conservation Board have been working
together since 2002 and have opened the mill for educational tours during the summer. The
partnership has raised funds to complete the projects listed in this brochure.

In 2010, the partnership expanded to include the Turkey River Recreational Corridor, FEMA, Northeast Iowa RC&D, Iowa Great Places and the Iowa DOT to achieve the outlined projects.

Over $1 million of the estimated $1.5 million estimated budget has been secured or is pending for secured. $577,000 is needed in matching funds to complete these projects. Your help is vital. Please consider a gift.

Motor Mill Bridge ProjectDonations can be sent to:

Motor Mill Foundation
29862 Osborne Rd
Elkader IA 52043

OR

Clayton County Conservation
29862 Osborne Rd
Elkader IA 52043

Donations to the Motor Mill Foundation, a 501c3 organization, or the Clayton County Conservation Board are 100% tax deductible.

Printable Information Brochure

Motor Mill: Stories in Stone

The limestone walls of Motor Mill have towered 90 feet above the river since 1869. The Mill, with four associated buildings, has witnessed the growth of the state of Iowa, challenges of Mother Nature and human nature, and the series of changes that shaped the agricultural economy. Native Americans also used the site for centuries before that.<br><br>Now, more than 140 years later, the nonprofit Motor Mill Foundation has launched a $500,000 drive to raise matching funds for $1.5 million in state, federal and private grants that they’ve received to help restore the buildings, rebuild the bridge, and to construct a multi-use trail along the Turkey River between Elkader and Motor Mill. Work is expected to begin on these projects in 2012.
history, natural beauty and serenity of the Motor Mill site and its surroundings, and to develop appropriate uses and interpretations as a regional treasure for the benefit of future generations.”

Since then, the Foundation has assisted the Conservation Board with several projects. Some include:
More than 9,100 volunteer hours of work;
Repairing roofs and chimneys on the Mill and the Inn;
Replacing floor joists and flooring in the Mill;
Replacing windows in the Mill and adding shutters on the first floor;
Repairing support beams for the millstone floor;
Managing the Robert Grau Memorial Savanna and prairie restorations; Revamping the campground and canoe ramp;
Improving the well and water system;
Leading tours at Motor from May through September;
Approving long-range development and educational plans for the site;
Developing a www.motormill.org website;
Creating a Facebook page;

Work to date has cost more than $208,000, which came from private donors and state and federal grants.

Future plans call for repairing roofs on the Stable, Icehouse, and Cooperage, excavation of silt in the Mill basement, and flood protection for the Inn, Stable and Icehouse.

The Motor Mill Foundation has begun a fund drive to raise another $500,000 to complete those projects.

For updates, go to www.motormill.org, or call the Clayton County Conservation Board, 563-245-1516.

Motor Mill Foundation Mission

To protect and preserve the architectural integrity, history, natural beauty and serenity of the Motor Mill site and its surroundings and to develop appropriate uses and interpretation as a regional treasure for the benefit of future generations.

Statewide Enhancement Grant is Awarded to Clayton County Conservation

The Clayton County Conservation Board recently received word we were awarded the Statewide Enhancement Grant for the trail connecting Pony Hollow Trail to Motor Mill. Additionally, the Conservation Board has hired an engineering firm to begin design work on the Motor Mill Bridge.Total estimated cost of the projects is $1.4 million, we have secured just over $1 million and will need to raise $350,000 in matching funds.  We are ¾ the way there.

2011 Schedule

The Motor Mill Foundation has been busy at Motor Mill over the past year.  The windows in the mill have been replaced, new flooring has been installed and the framework for the mill stone floor is nearly completed.
In addition, continued historical research on the mill and the many stories that surround the site are constantly being documented.
The Motor Mill will be open for tours two weekends a month May through September in 2011. The dates and times are on Saturday and Sundays from 12:00 Noon to 5:00 PM.
For May the dates are 14 and 15 and Memorial Day Weekend 28, 29 and 30th. Also on the weekend of May 21 and 22, the Civil War Living History Camp will be held at the mill. Most of the activities will occur on Saturday May 21.
The dates for the rest of the summer include June 11, 12, 25, 26 for July 9, 10, 23, 24 in August 6, 7, 20, 21 and September 3, 4, 5, 17 and 18th. For more information or to schedule a special group tour you may call the Osborne Center at 563-245-1516

Memories of Motor

“Memories of Motor”
Saturday, November 14th at 1:00 p.m.
Osborne Conservation Center

The Motor Mill Foundation is looking for people with “Memories of Motor.” This will be an event to reunite and gather former residents of the Motor Mill area and their family members to share memories and stories of Motor Mill.

“Memories of Motor” will be held November 14th at 1:00 p.m. at the Osborne Center located five miles south of Elkader, IA off Highway 13. Please bring stories, memories, photos, and other items of interest to share or display.

This event promises to be a fun and nostalgic visit down memory lane to remember Motor Mill’s past. The Motor Mill Foundation hopes you will come join us to share your own stories of Motor. If you know of anyone else with ties to Motor who should be there, please share this invitation with them. Please RSVP at 245-1516.

Osborne Nature Center is located on HWY 13 five miles south of Elkader. For more information on these events call 563-245-1516 or visit www.claytoncountyconservation.org.

Garlic Mustard Pull

Garlic MustardVOLUNTEER WORK DAY : PLANT PRAIRIE PLUGS AND PULL GARLIC MUSTARD JUNE 8 1 PM – 4 PM
A volunteer work day has been scheduled to work on the Robert Grau Memorial Savanna at Motor Mill Park on Sunday June 8 from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM. Volunteers are asked to meet at the Motor Mill Cooperage and wear long pants, long sleeved shirt and a good pair of sturdy shoes. You may want a hat, sun screen, water bottle and bug repellant as well. If you cannot stay the entire time, please come down for any part of the day you have available, your help will be appreciated.

Two projects are planned for the afternoon. The first project will be to plant 1000 prairie plug plants on the Robert Grau Savanna. On April 20, as part of an Earth Day Celebration, 20 volunteers planted 1000 prairie plugs on the site. This planting was part of a 2000 plant order and the remaining 1000 plugs will be planted June 8 to finish the project. The plants were provided by the Grau family of Elkader.

The second planned project is to pull, bag and remove garlic mustard from the site. Garlic mustard is a biennial herb that invades practically any habitat but seems to dominate woodland and low woodland areas. This very aggressive plant will out compete native species for sunlight and will literally shade out native plants in an area.

The Clayton County Conservation Board has taken an active role in the management of the Motor Mill landscape. Since the beginning of the Robert Grau Memorial Savanna in 2005, the Conservation Board has conducted several pre-scribed burns, prairie plantings and weed control efforts to recreate what is believed the landscape looked like when the Motor Mill was in operation. Your volunteer efforts on June 8th will help toward those efforts.

If you are planning to attend these volunteer efforts at Motor Mill, please call the Osborne Office at 245-1516 so we can plan ahead for the day.