South of the Dan Driving Tour
Historic Buildings in Halifax County, Virginia

John Salmon's Grist Mill
Blane's Mill Lane on Butrum Creek

SalmonGristMill.png - 356809 Bytes
Note: This is what the Grist Mill may have looked like in 1798

Contributed by Nancy Ann Salmon, April 30, 2009

     John Salmon owned land on Lawsons Creek in 1761 & 1762.. over 500 acres, next to John Rogers. In 1787 he bought 92 arces from a William Traylor, on Butrum Camp Branch.

      In 1798 he went to court to erect a grist mill on this Butrum camp creek. The Blanes Mill pond was called the Salmon's millpond. The deed at the Halifax County Courthouse states "James Salmon to Robert Salmon", deed bk. 20, pg. 549, Sept 28th, 1805.

      The 112 arces on the deed reads "James Warrens line to Butram Creek in Salmon's Mill pond". John Salmon died in 1803 just 3-4 yrs after having a grist mill built.

Court Records

John Salmon For The Mill June Court 1798 Page 461

On the motion of John Salmon setting forth that he is owner of land on the east side of Butram camp Branch, in this county, across which branch he is desirous of erecting a dam for the purpose of working a Water Grist Mill and that the heirs of a certain William Traylor is owner of the lands on the opposite side against which he would wish to abuilt his said dam and it appearing that Thomas Traylor agent for the heirs of the said William Traylor desd. Hath had ten days previous notice of this motion he was solemnly called but came not; therefore it is ordered that a unit of absque damnum be inforced directed to the sheriff of the said county commanding him to summon and impanel twelve fit persons to meet upon the lands so purposed for the abutment on Saturday the twenty first day of July, minute who being met, shall be charged by the said sheriff impartially and to the best of their skill and judgment to view the said lands sole purpose for an abutment, and to locate circumscribe, by curtain metes and bounds, one acre there of, having once regard therein to the interest of both parties, and to appraise the same, according to its value; to examine the lands above and below, of the property of others, which may probably be overflowed, and to say for what damage it will be of the several proprietors, and wither the mansion house of any such proprietors, or the offices, curtilage, or garden thurunto belonging, or orchards will be overflowed; to enquire wither, and in what degree fish of passage and ordinary navigation will be obstructed; wither by any or by what means such obstruction may be prevented; and wither, in their opinion the health of the neighbors will be annoyed by the stagnation of the waters. And the inquest made and sealed by the said, Jurors together with the unit be returned by the said Sheriff July Court Minute. ___________

John Salmon For The Mill July Court 1798 Page 472

The Sheriff having returned the unit of absque damnum, on the petition on John Salmon leave to erect a Water Grist Mill on Butram Camp Branch in this county with the following return thereon to with, I have agreeable to my command in the within unit summoned twelve freeholders of this county who met at the place purposed for an abutment, but the agent of the proprietors of the lands not having notice as the Law directs of the time and place of lacking the inquest, I was by John Salmon directed, not to impanel the Jury __Peter Fontaine D-Shiff, of James Mcraw Shiff __When upon the motion of the said John Salmon, it is ordered that a new unit be enforced agreeable to the former one, to be executed on the second Saturday in August Minute; and returned according to Law________

John Salmon for The Mill December Court 1798 Page 574

The Sheriff having returned the unit of absque damnum, on the petition on John Salmon for leave to erect a Water Grist Mill on Butram Camp Branch in this county with the following inquest thereon made and sealed by the said Sheriff and Jurors according to Law to wit, in obedience to a unit of agreed damnum, I have impaneled and sworn the following

Jurors this 17th day of November 1798, to wit, John Compton, John Adams, John Atkinson, William Wood, Bunel Grant, Edwin Garlington, Sylvester Adams, John Chappell, Tyree Robertson, Joseph Hewell, William Murry, Cason Guthery, Who met upon the lands of the heirs and legatus of William Traylor desd. Where John Salmon proposes to about his Mill dam for the purpose of erecting a Water Grist Mill on Butram Camp Branch and had viewed the land so purpose for an abutment, of the property of the heirs and legatus of William Traylor desd. And have located and circumscribed curtain meets and bounties, surveyed by Isaac Oakes, surveyor of the county of Halifax, one acre of land and do appraise the same to the sum of seventeen shillings, and we the said Jurors, we have viewed the lands above and below the said proposed dam, and are of opinion that the lands of the heirs and legatus of William Traylor desd. Will be inquired by erecting the said Dam the sum of six pounds nineteen shillings, and we the said Jurors are of opinion that the mansion house, offices, guardians, or orchards, of no person will be injured by erecting the dam, nor fish of passage nor boundary navigation will be obstructed or any manner injured thereby and in the opinion of the said Jurors, the health of the neighbors, will not be annoyed by the stagnation of the waters to which the said Jurors as well as the Sheriff have hereunto set our hand and seals the day and oath above written___John Chapell, James Adams, Cason Guthery, Tyree Robertson, John Compton, Sylvester Adams, Bunel Grant, William Murry, Joseph Hewell, John Atkinson, William Wood, Edward Garlington, Peter Fontaine, therefore it is considered by the Court that the said John Salmon have leave to erect his said Mill on his paying the damages Offered____


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   The transcription and the updated photos are the work of Dan Shaw. In some cases modifications to the original text have been made to improve the flow of the story, correct typos, and insert new or clarifying information. Additional facts or further corrections are welcome.    This author takes no credit for the original publications and its research. These local historians should be honored for the their endless hours of efforts to document this county's history for posterity.