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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Buffalo in Erie County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

General Mills and Great Northern Elevators

The Industrial Heritage Trail

 
 
General Mills and Great Northern Elevators Marker image. Click for full size.
By Anton Schwarzmueller, June 3, 2015
1. General Mills and Great Northern Elevators Marker
Inscription.
General Mills Grain Elevator
The General Mills Grain Elevator was originally known as the Washburn Crosby Elevator. In 1903, Washburn Crosby built a set of nine bins known as Elevator A next to the flour mill on South Michigan Avenue that was already built in 1886. The company used earthen tiles as construction material. In 1909, the company built another elevator called Elevator B, and a flour mill called B Mill. The mill operations were electrically driven, unlike the steam-powered original mill of 1886.

In 1922, General Mills erected a four story concrete warehouse along the City Ship Canal, and in 1961 the original mill of 1886 was replaced by the C Mill. Mill B was dismantled in the 1960s. General Mills remains a bulk cereal and flour producer here in Buffalo.

The Great Northern Grain Elevator
The Great Northern Grain Elevator was constructed in 1897 with a capacity of 2.5 million bushels. It was the first elevator that used electricity as a power source. The wooden construction was replaced by cyndrical steel bins to provide fire resistance. The steel bins were enclosed by a 2.5 foot thick brick shell wall to protect them from rust and corrosion.

The Great Northern, like the old wooden elevators, is the last of Buffalo's "working house" elevators, in which storage bins, work spaces,
Marker is Under The Skyway image. Click for full size.
By Anton Schwarzmueller, June 3, 2015
2. Marker is Under The Skyway
Marker at center.
and conveying apparatus are all located within a single structure.

[images] The Great Northern Grain Elevator, circa 1900. Library of Congress, Detroit Publishing Company Photograph Collection. Cross Section Great Northern Elevator. Historic American Engineering Record. Library of Congress. The Deneral Mills Grain Elevator, circa 1900. Historic American Engineering Record, HAER NY, 15-BUF, 32-1. Jet Lowe, Photographer.

Grain arriving at the Great Northern was elevated from the boats by one of three marine legs (B). The grain was weighed inside each tower through a gravity-fed feeding system which included tower garner (C), and scale and hopper (D). Next, the grain was transferred from the base of the tower to the house via wall-mounted "V" hopper (E), ans spouted to the house lifting boot (F). After the grain was lifted by the lofting leg (G) to the head floor (H), it was spouted to the storage bin (I/J), either directly or by conveyors (K).

Grain for shipping was spouted from the bottom of the storage bins (L) to the house elevator boot (F), then lifted to the shipping lofting leg (G), and to the head floor. Shipments were weighed in the cupola by a gravity-fed scale system which included a garner (M), and scale and hopper (N). Double-jointed bin floor turnspouts (O) discharged the grain to the shipping bins (P), either by direct spouting or by conveying
General Mills Elevator & Marker image. Click for full size.
By Anton Schwarzmueller, June 3, 2015
3. General Mills Elevator & Marker
The General Mills Elevator is the white tower with the Gold Medal Flour orange logo. A General Mills logo is seen on the other tower face.
and tripping (Q). Finally, the grain was discharged through shipping spouts (R).

1931 Buffalo Harbor Map, Army Corps of Engineers.
 
Location. 42° 52.043′ N, 78° 52.625′ W. Marker is in Buffalo, New York, in Erie County. Marker is on Fuhrmann Boulevard 0.4 miles north of The Skyway (New York State Route 5), on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Buffalo NY 14203, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Development of the Inner Harbor (approx. 0.2 miles away); Joncaire Trading Post (approx. mile away); History of Times Beach (approx. 0.6 miles away); Times Beach Nature Preserve (approx. 0.6 miles away); The French Connection (approx. 0.6 miles away); The Cobblestone Historic District (approx. 0.6 miles away); The Connecting Terminal Elevator (approx. 0.6 miles away); The Erie Canal / Two Waterfronts (approx. 0.7 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Buffalo.
 
Categories. Industry & Commerce
 
Great Northern Elevator & Marker image. Click for full size.
By Anton Schwarzmueller, June 3, 2015
4. Great Northern Elevator & Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on July 12, 2015, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York. This page has been viewed 157 times since then and 12 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on July 12, 2015, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York.
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