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Killian Corn Mill is a historic water mill near Mountbellew in Galway that was once used for grinding corn from local farmers. The mill was built around 1800, at a time when water mills were an essential part of the rural economy and society. 

Water mills used the power of flowing water to turn a large wheel, which then drove a mechanism to grind corn into flour or meal. This process was vital for producing food for humans and animals, as well as for trade and taxation. Killian Corn Mill used a stream diverted from the River Shiven, which flows through the village of Ballygar, to power its wheel. 

The mill was owned by the Killian family, who also owned a large estate in the area. The mill served the local agricultural community, who brought their corn to be ground at the mill in exchange for a fee or a portion of the product. The mill operated until the early 20th century, when it was gradually replaced by more modern and efficient methods of milling. The mill fell into disrepair and was eventually abandoned. Today, it stands as a ruinous but impressive reminder of the past.

Killian Corn Mill is a detached four-bay three-storey building with an attic floor. It is constructed of random rubble stone with lime mortar and has a pitched slate roof. The mill has several features that indicate its function, such as:

– A large opening on the ground floor where the water entered the mill and turned the wheel.
– A circular opening on the first floor where the drive shaft passed through to connect the wheel and the grinding mechanism.
– A series of small windows on the upper floors where the grain was stored and processed.
– A chimney on the roof where the smoke from the kiln escaped.

The mill also has some extensions that were added later, such as:

– A two-storey pitched roof extension to the rear that probably housed additional machinery or storage space.
– A single-storey flat corrugated-iron roofed extension to the north that may have been used as a workshop or office.

Killian Corn Mill is one of the few surviving examples of water mills in Galway. It is an important element of the industrial heritage of the county, as it illustrates the technology, economy and society of rural Ireland in the 19th and early 20th centuries. It also reflects the history of the Killian family and their influence on the local area.

Killian Corn Mill is protected as a recorded monument by the National Monuments Service, and as a protected structure by Galway County Council. It is currently in a state of decay and is not accessible to the public, but it can be viewed from the road with the landowner’s permission.


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Killian Corn Mill



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