The Isaac Chase Mill, located In Liberty Park, remains as the only grist mill on its original site built by the early pioneers in Salt Lake City. It was also the first mill in the valley to separate the flour from the shorts and bran.
The property, with springs of water, was deeded to Isaac Chase in 1847. He soon purchased another fifteen acres and eventually owned more than one hundred acres in the area. In late 1847, he built an upright sawmill to cut lumber for his home and mill. In 1848, a small crackling mill was built. hen, in 1852, Isaac Chase supervised the building of the “Chase Mill” and installed the irons and millstones his daughter had “freighted” to Utah when the family emigrated to the valley in September 1847. William Weeks was the architect. Chase later built a home nearby, which is still standing.
In 1854 Brigham Young, who had married Mrs. Chase’s daughter by a
previous marriage, bought into the mill. The mill’s flour became extremely important during the famine period of 1856-1857. In 1859 Brigham Young Jr. was assigned to manage the mill. By i860 Brigham Young purchased Chase’s stock and assumed complete control. Chase moved to his adobe cabin on State Street where he died a year later.
The mill continued to be used into the 1880’s. About 1882 the location was purchased from the Brigham Young estate by Salt Lake City for “Liberty Park.” The mill was used as a supply shed for a number of years. Then, in 1896, a drive was made to tear it down; however, through the effective efforts of Kate Chase, a grand-daughter, support was marshalled to save it.
In 1927, the Daughters of Utah Pioneers, began negotiations with the city for its use and preservation, which they obtained under lease in 1933. They have used it as a relic hall and now open it to the public during the summer months.
Interest has been expressed at various times to restore it to operating condition, which now may become a possibility.
This site was added to the National Register of Historic Places on June 15, 1970 (#70000627)
The Daughters of Utah Pioneers historic marker at the site reads:
The Chase Mill
Built in 1852 by Isaac Chase, a native of New York State, who came to Utah in September 1847. His daughter Louisa drove the ox team across the plains which brought the mill stones and mill irons, which were used in the manufacture of flour. In 1854 Brigham Young became a partner with Isaac Chase, ad the mill was fitted out with improved machinery. During the famine of 1856-57 many families were furnished flour gratis, and the lives of many men, women and children were saved. Brigham Young acquired full possession of the mill in 1860, it ceased operations when the farm with its buildings were purchased by Salt Lake City in 1880.