Portfolio from the Baron Woolen Mill
Brigham City, Utah

In December of 2000 and again in May and June of 2001, I had the opportunity to spend some time in the Baron Woolen Mill in Brigham City, Utah. Entry to the Mill was arranged by Dan Smith, a photographer local to Brigham City, and the Northern Utah Camera Club. My buddy John Aldrich joined me for the May and June trips, and he has produced some absolutely stunning prints from his negatives.

Originally built in 1869-1870, the Mill was initially part of the Brigham City Manufacturing and Mercantile Association. After a series of disasters and legal difficulties, operation of the mill was taken over in 1888 by James Baron, one of the mill workers. The mill has burned down three times (1877, 1907, and 1949), but was immediately re-constructed and operational within a year each time. Although the Mill has had several additions since 1877, the original stone building is still highly visible. The Mill was a full process operation, purchasing wool fleeces from the local sheep ranchers. The raw wool was cleaned, dyed, carded, spun, woven and finished, all onsite. The building still houses the vintage machinery used for production, which is highly prized both for its historical significance and for its artistic imagery.

The Mill gained the name by which it is now known through four generations of ownership by the Baron family. Since the Baron family's departure, the Mill has experienced one, short-lived ownership that ended in bankruptcy and then a period of revival under the current owners, Bob and Marva Sadler. The Sadlers put a gallant effort into producing the traditional Baron's woolen blanket. However, due to the constant complications of trying to produce while utilizing the aged equipment, the Sadlers were unable to produce a sufficient number of blankets to break-even and their loans are now in default. The Friends of the Baron Woolen Mill is currently trying to rescue and restore the Mill.


Thumbnails of some of my photographs from these trips are shown below. Just like a book, the photographs in this exhibit are copyrighted by the author, 2000, 2001. All rights reserved. Mine, mine, mine. Actually, I don't care if you download (and thus copy) an image or two from the exhibit as long as you don't sell it, trade it, include it free with anything you are selling or trading, or otherwise gain anything from it other than the pleasure of viewing it. All of this, of course, is just common sense but, since the Web seems to be somewhat uncharted in terms of property rights, it never hurts to say it.

Note: The scans of these negatives won't do justice to the tonal separation, quality, and detail in an original photograph (we always say this - hey, you haven't seen the originals, how are you going to know.).


Click on a thumbnail below if you would like to see a full size picture.


Flywheel 
Baron Woolen Mill 
December, 2000

Flywheel 
Baron Woolen Mill 
December, 2000

Flywheels and Belt 
Baron Woolen Mill 
May, 2001


Chair, Gears, and Wall 
Baron Woolen Mill 
May, 2001

Flywheel and Gearing 
Baron Woolen Mill 
May, 2001

Flywheels 
Baron Woolen Mill 
May, 2001


Gearing 
Baron Woolen Mill 
May, 2001

Yarn Spools 
Baron Woolen Mill 
May, 2001

Sink and Pitcher 
Baron Woolen Mill 
May, 2001


Oil Jars 
Baron Woolen Mill 
May, 2001

Spare Gears 
Baron Woolen Mill 
June, 2001

Pulleys and Belt 
Baron Woolen Mill 
June, 2001


Flywheel Detail 
Baron Woolen Mill 
June, 2001

Wire Brush Roller 
Baron Woolen Mill 
June, 2001

Door, Brooms, and Wall 
Baron Woolen Mill 
June, 2001

 
Christopher A. Cline
Westminster College of Salt Lake City
1840 South 1300 East
Salt Lake City, Utah 84105
(801) 832-2346
ccline@westminstercollege.edu