Paper Mill Complex
Canal Water Powers Paper Production
Surrounded By Immense Water Power
Delphi Paper Mill: George Robertson came from Scotland and established a small paper mill here in 1845. It was powered by Canal water leased by the State and parallel to the Wabash River. Enoch Rinehart bought an interest in the mill in 1848 only to see it burn in 1849. Rinehart with a new associate. Charles Wood rebuilt the mill in 1850 During 1851, Abner Bowen bought out Wood. In 1864 Bowen sold his interest to Charles Robertson. By 1873 Rinehart had become the sole owner.
Robinson & Wood Paper Mill: Located to the north, also using canal water power, George Robinson and John Armitage burt a paper mill in 1853. When Armitage retired, his interest was purchased by Charles A. Wood. Later Dewey and Griffith took over management. In 1868, Abner H. Bowen with his son A.T. Bowen bought and operated the mill.
Wabash River water, at the nearby Pittsburg dam, raised the river level to feed water into the Canal which also was used to turn the mill's wheel: Upstream at the dam in 1881, vigilantes dynamited the dam releasing the impounded water into the river by passing the mill
During its heyday, "Rinehart Mill” gained a reputation for making high-quality high-rag content for all its papers a process often reserved for writing paper. In The days before paper bags, Rinehart Mill's brown wrapping paper was popular with grocery and hardware stores and their lighter brown paper with dry good stores. Merchants knew that quality wrappings reflected well on their businesses.
An 1849 edition of the Delphi Weekly Times, over a century and a half, retaining a fresh appearance is a testament to the high quality paper made here. Loads of Rhinehart & Wood papers were sent to Chicago, Cincinnati, Indianapolis, Louisville, as well as nearby Indiana newspaper presses in Logansport, Lafayette, Kokomo, and Huntington.
A continuous opera, rags were ripped into strips, buttons and buckles were removed and the rags were then boiled. Alhoiling, beaters pounded them into a pulp. Next, pulp was passed into a cylinder machine which rolled tulip onto a slow moving felt belt draining off excess water: then to rollers, from which the paper passed over during the curing process.
Rags were in demand and came to Delphi on board canal boats. Delphi merchants advertised old rags in trade for cash or exchange for merchandise. Children could earn a cent and a half a pound for rags to be made into paper.
Canal Pivot Bridge No. 49
Numbered consecutively from the Indiana Ohio state line 120 canal miles east, road bridges provided both foot and wagon traffic over the canal. No. 49 was a pivot bridge anchored on the berm side of the can An operator turned a crank mechanism used to swing the bridge out o the way of advancing canal boats. At its dedication in the 1840s, Miss Alice V. Jackson was given the honor of rotating the elaborate structure opening the way for a packet boat.
Erected by Tippecanoe Arts Federation.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Industry & Commerce • Waterways & Vessels. In addition, it is included in the Wabash & Erie Canal series list.
Location. 40° 34.967′ N, 86° 40.983′ W. Marker is in Delphi, Indiana, in Carroll County. Marker can be reached from Bicycle Bridge Road 0.1 miles west of West Monroe Street (Route 16), on the left when traveling west. The marker is on the grounds of the Delphi Historic Trails Park. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 705 W Main St, Delphi IN 46923, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of
Credits. This page was last revised on December 26, 2020. It was originally submitted on December 25, 2020, by TeamOHE of Wauseon, Ohio. This page has been viewed 50 times since then and 10 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on December 26, 2020, by TeamOHE of Wauseon, Ohio. • Devry Becker Jones was the editor who published this page.