New Century Mill

You can read about the history and designation of the New Century Mill historic landmark.


Address: 545 Oak Street Southeast

Neighborhood: University of Minnesota

Construction Date: 1900

Contractor: Edward P. Allis Company

Engineer: William Dixon Gray

Historic Use: Flour mill

Current Use: Burned and demolished in 1990

Date of Local Designation: 1984

Date of National Designation: 1980, de-listed in 1993

Area of Significance: Engineering, economic history

Period of Significance: 1900-1921 

Historic Profile: The New Century Mill was completed in 1900 and was the first steam-powered flour mill in Minneapolis. Its location at the intersection of two major railroads provided it with a competitive advantage which was able to offset the additional cost of operating on steam power rather than water power. The New Century Mill was a significant step in the evolution of the milling industry in Minneapolis, decoupling it from St. Anthony Falls and the Mississippi and increasing its connection to the railroads. The mill was designed by William Dixon Gray, lead engineer at the Edward P. Allis Company of Milwaukee, and the most significant milling engineer of his era. Gray was responsible for the design of several other mills in Minneapolis, including the Standard Mill, a contributing property to the St. Anthony Falls Historic District, as well as Minneapolis’ first roller mill. The New Century Mill was owned by George C. Christian, son of George H. Christian, who owned and operated mills for the Washburn Company. Milling operations at the New Century Mill ceased in the early 1920s, after which point the building’s use is unknown, but it was likely used primarily for storage. The building suffered a major fire and was demolished in 1990.

Photo Credits:

CPED Staff, 1979.

Works Cited:

“National Register of Historic Places Inventory Nomination Form: New Century Mill,” 1987.


Updated: April 2015

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Public Service Center
505 Fourth Ave. S., Room 320
Minneapolis, MN 55415