Gospel set for Hagood Mill Aug. 16

PICKENS — The wheel will be turning and the hills resounding in song at Hagood Mill on Saturday, Aug. 16, as “Music in the Mountains 2014” presents an old-time camp meeting sing-along just like our forefathers had 100 years ago.

Bring your lawn chair or blanket to Hagood Mill and be prepared to sing all the familiar old gospel songs with heritage singers.

At 11:30 a.m., the gospel singing session will be led by the Owens family of St Andrews Methodist Church in Easley. The Owens family is part of a rich treasury of gospel songsters from our area, singing together as a family since the 1920s. The members of this historic gospel family are led by their dynamic piano patriarch, Thomas Owens, who has played for many of the old time quartets at historic gospel singings over the years.

At 12:30 p.m., visitors will enjoy the mellow renderings of Roosevelt Baker and the Gospel True Tones, an African-American Gospel group from Easley. You might remember Roosevelt Baker from when he sang for the famous Jackson Brothers, who were awarded the South Carolina State Heritage Award.

Following the Gospel True Tones will be glorious gospel renderings of Lib Porter and Heartstrings. Porter’s sonorous singing will be punctuated by the Mother Maybelle-type playing of her autoharp and the accompanying stringed music of the Heartstrings.

There will be lots to see on Aug. 16, as Hagood Mill hosts a variety of folk life and traditional arts demonstrations. There will be blacksmithing, bowl-digging, flint knapping, chair-caning, moonshining, broom-making, basket-making, pottery, quilting, spinning, knitting, weaving, woodcarving, metal-smithing, leather-working and more. You can ask questions of the artists and make a purchase of their traditional arts to take home.

The centerpiece of the Hagood Mill historic site is the water-powered 1845 gristmill. It is one of the finest examples of nineteenth century technology in the Upcountry and operates just as it has for the last century-and-a-half. The mill will be running throughout the day. In the old mill, fresh stone-ground corn meal, grits and wheat flour will be available. In addition rye flour, Basmati rice flour, oat flour, oatmeal, popping corn meal, and grits, organic yellow corn meal and grits, and buckwheat flour are produced and may be available. Hagood Mill cookbooks and a variety of other mill-related items are also available.

There promises to be lots to do and lots of fun, so head on out, grab a plate of food on-site from the Gatehouse Restaurant and enjoy a special day at the Hagood Mill.

The Hagood Mill historic site is open Wednesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. all year long. The Mill operates, rain or shine, for a special festival the third Saturday of every month.

The Hagood Mill is located just three miles north of Pickens off US 178 or 5.5 miles south of Cherokee Foothills Scenic Hwy 11off Highway 178 at 138 Hagood Mill Road.

“Music in the Mountains 2014” is sponsored by a private benefactor.

For more information, contact the Hagood Mill at (864) 898-2936 or check out