The Death Mill of Blowing Rock
Published: 2014-09-15

Where, oh where, is Caroline Sturdy Colls when one needs her? I visited Blowing Rock, North Carolina recently and hiked a lovely trail whose head was located almost “downtown” in this mountain tourist venue. The trail followed a babbling brook called New Years Creek through the forest that surrounds the town.

And as I trudged along enjoying the cool August mountain weather, the breeze in the branches, the warbling of all manner of their feathered denizens, something ominous appeared on my right, between the trail and the brook, with a sign whose title read, “The Ruins.” Being, as I am, a follower of archeological work on the telltale traces of the Holocaust, I immediately knew what to suspect: genocide of millions of innocent Jews. The text of the sign offered no confirmation of my suspicions beyond its nonspecific title—the rest of the sign merely identified the benefactors who watched over and preserved whatever it was the The Ruins actually were.

So, an archeologist tuned to the sensibilities of these times might have asked herself: what are these the ruins of? I browsed the telltale signs (see picture). Vertical walls, none standing more than about two feet above the surface of the earth (what was that dirt concealing, anyway?). Perpendicular corners (just like those in the gas chambers of Auschwitz, I recalled). Small areas, it appeared, below 20 square meters (they looked like meters to me, anyway, another tell-tale sign), like the gas chambers at Treblinka, of which there may have been as many as ten. My suspicions alerted, I continued along the trail with hopes of some resolution pre-empting my thoughts of any other subject more important than when I might hope to get lunch.

And these perfervid hopes were soon fulfilled, not by lunch, but by the trail’s switching back and following the creek along its bank such that I soon found myself again beside The Ruins, but this time, between it and the creek, which continued its innocuous babbling as though it had never been witness, nay, party to any genocidal atrocity in the presumable centuries of its sylvan existence. I soon found the creek out, and at the same time, the infernal design of what to any other casual observer might have seemed merely the ruins of some everyday mill or other.

There were more rooms to be seen in the decaying foundation (see next photo), which remained at least a foot above the inscrutable earth, and these rooms were below the level of the rooms I had espied upon my initial approach described above. My archeological/forensic antennae were by this point fully abuzz, almost to the point at which I might have forgotten the time of my forthcoming mid-day repast. There were drains from the upper chambers into the lower ones, I could readily make out, even if that isn’t clear in the snapshots I took with my trembling fingers (excited not only by the evil being discovered, but by the delay of my sustenance). Those drains looked to me quite adequate to accommodate the ashes from crematoria at the upper levels, if not actual bodies or at least the bones thereof (after the rendering of fat and other useful resources from the mortal remains of the innocent victims). It all formed a picture of the darkest imaginable clarity to me, without having so much as turned a single spade of the dark, fertile soil that embalmed the unutterable horrors no doubt to be discovered just beneath its loamy surface.

But what of the creek—that clear, pristine flow of water descending from the rain-soaked heights above my head, and even the tops of the trees growing nearby, heedless of the atrocities I was detecting in their very midst? Surely it performed some sinister function that would explain the placement of this satanic mill along its banks. I was not long in figuring it out. A vertical wheel with vanes—or paddles, if you will—that dip into a flowing current of water will turn, as designers of mills everywhere have known for millennia (no pun intended). What could such a wheel do to both aid and at the same time conceal the activities of such an installation as my laser-like sensibilities had detected?

As I proceeded down the trail in hopes of an early rendezvous with a bit of sustenance so well-earned not only by my trekking to this point, but by my sleuthery—of which I knew my patron saint (and, I confess, sex object, as I am a long-since-hyperannuated male of scholarly inclination, if I do say so myself), Caroline Sturdy Colls, would be proud—I descried the answer: The Wheel itself! We’ve got gas chambers, of course, at the top of the slope. From the gas chambers, as some scholars seem to overlook, we’ve got dead bodies, which need of course to be cremated, whether before or after the recovery from them of fat, fillings, shoes, eyeglasses, or whatever else the fiends who killed them might happen to covet. From the cremations, we’ve got … ashes!

Ashes. Tons of ashes. Could the creek help with these? The wheel? Yes! Of course, yes! It’s all so simple: the wheel dips into the (flowing) water. The wheel turns around. The vanes (buckets?) go round and round. As they go back down into the creek, they’re empty—the water has spilled out of them. Couldn’t they be filled with ashes as they go back down? The ashes would fall into the creek and course harmlessly down the mountain with the rest of the water, perhaps not quite as pure as above the mill, but who down there would know the difference anyway? Or care?

Nazi infiltration of the area of Blowing Rock, North Carolina is a well-concealed conspiracy, as the ambiguity of the sign headed “The Ruins” should amply attest. Why, indeed, is it so manifestly uninformative about the purpose and design of these incriminating relics? While the year-round population of the area is conspicuously short of Jews, it is readily discerned that long-time residents of the area have made a thriving business of fobbing off their unwanted real estate to gullible but well-heeled Jews from South Florida and other places where their kind are known to concentrate (pun intended).

From time to time, I have inferred, the locals feel some need to “cull the herd,” to refer to the owners of land in their environs as though they were chattel, and this must be where the Death Mill I have uncovered comes in. Inconvenient Jews would have been easily gathered up on moonless nights deep in the fastness of the Blue Ridge Mountains, and consigned to the “disposal facility” so cunningly concealed deep in the woods surrounding Blowing Rock, North Carolina.

I’m ready to blow the top off this genocidal scheme, despite its evidently having been long-since replaced by something even harder to expose. But I need a forensic archeologist to make my charges stick.

I have a room at the Holiday Inn Express just up US 321 from Blowing Rock, Caroline. This could be your Next Big Break!

I’ll buy lunch.


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Author(s): Jett Rucker
Title: The Death Mill of Blowing Rock
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Published: 2014-09-15
First posted on CODOH: Dec. 9, 2015, 6:24 a.m.
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