Investigations into

The Historic
Mill Dams on the Chattahoochee River

Columbus, Georgia and Phenix City, Alabama


  • 1828Seaborn Jones constructs a dam in the Chattahoochee River to power his grist mill
  • 1844-45First Water Lot Dam built (below 14th Street) and raceway partially constructed for water lots
  • 1844The first water lot mill, Coweta Falls textile factory (water lot #1), begins operation
  • 1848Howard Manufacturing Company opens mill on water lot 11
  • 1848Variety Works saw mill built in river bed portion of water lot 15
  • 1849Winter’s Palace Flour & Grist Mill built on water lot 15 begins operation
  • 1851First Eagle textile Mill is built on water lot 12
  • 1852Supreme Court rules all riparian rights for Chattahoochee River belong to Georgia
  • 1854Variety Works burns
  • 1856A new water lot timber frame dam built downstream from original dam
  • 1868The Eagle and Phenix Mill is built at location of original Eagle Mill after Civil War
  • 1869City Mills is rebuilt
  • 1869A third water lot timber frame dam is constructed immediately adjacent (downstream) to the 1856 dam
  • 1870Second Eagle and Phenix Mill building is constructed on water lot north of first mill
  • 1871New wooden timber frame dam built at City Mills
  • 1872Palace flour mill burns
  • 1878Third Eagle and Phenix Mill begins operation
  • 1882Eagle and Phenix Masonry Dam Constructed across river just below 1869 dam
  • 1899-1900Two wheel houses erected at the end at the east end of the Eagle & Phenix masonry dam
  • 1904-1907New masonry dam replaces wood frame dam at City Mills
  • 1980sOperations at City Mills cease
  • 1990sMost operations at Eagle & Phenix Mills cease
  • 2003Eagle & Phenix Mills repurchased by the W.C. Bradley Company
  • 2012Eagle & Phenix masonry dam breached
  • 2013City Mills masonry dam breached
  • 2013New Whitewater course opens on the Chattahoochee River