In 1848 a steam flouring-mill was established in Bowling Green. Sheriff Lot Loving bought the first barrel of flour made. Sometime later, Mr. Oberholzer and Mr. Silvius moved the flouring-mill to Clay City. By November 1889, a new flouring-mill at Bowling Green was opened. In 1892, O. H. Markle sold the Bowling Green flour mill to Stewart Drake.
By 1910 the Bowling Green flour mill was owned by Walter Boyer. He renovated the plant, had it operational, and turned-out first-class flour. In April of 1910, Mr. Boyer purchased a site for a new mill on a lot north of the Methodist church at Bowling Green. Walter had the new Bowling Green flour mill completed and opened for business by October 1910. He produced a new, “Gilt Edge,” flour at the grand opening of the mill to the public. Congressman Ralph W. Moss, Fred Pochen, Reverend J. W. Eller, and Reverend J. R. Hand delivered addresses to scores of visitors. The Harmony band furnished music for the occasion, and they certainly entertained the people. The flour mill force was composed of Walter Boyer, owner; Ernest T. Drake, head miller; Walter Gilbrech, engineer; and Homer and Ed Boyer, Teamsters. It was one of the best and latest improved flour mills in the state, being far in advance of anything in this section of the state.
By January of 1914, the flour mill was operated by Boyer & King and was in the hands of a receiver Jerome Bogle, as they were having trouble staying afloat. The mill was put up for sale. The new owners of the property were Henry Kohlenberg, John Weidner, and William Skelton. They sold it in November 1915 to A. B. Lewis of Cloverdale.
In 1921 Snyder M. Johnson and his brother-in-law, George W. Brown, owned it, and was introducing their new flour, which had been placed on sale at several grocery stores in Brazil. The flour still went under the old brand of “Gilt Edge.” Mr. Johnson said that he was making an entirely different grade of flour, using only the best of Clay County wheat. Mr. Johnson stated that the wheat was put through the fanning process three times, by means of which only the clean hard wheat was left for the manufacture of the flour, and all soft wheat was used in the making of feeds. In The Brazil Daily Times it was advertised that Gilt Edge Flour was being sold in the stores of: W. J. Stewart, C.C. Nicholas, W. R. Todd, West End Grocery, J. W. Todd, and E. J. McCanna.
In 1922 the Bowling Green flour mill was milling wheat, and the report from the mill officials was that the wheat was of good quality. The wheat tested up from 51 to 58, and the average yield per bushel ranged in different localities in the vicinity from 8 to 25 bushels per acre. It was noted that the best wheat was brought in from Jordan Village, Owen County.
In 1925 they were still advertising their “Gilt Edge Flour” in the area newspapers.
Submitted by Rhonda Tincher, Clay County Genealogy Society, Center Point, Indiana.
Sources: Brazil Register, October 31, 1889; Brazil Democrat, November 7, 1889; May 12, 1892; Brazil Weekly Democrat, April 28, 1910; October 27, 1910; November 25, 1915; October 27, 1921; Brazil Daily Times, November 3, 1921; July 21, 1922; September 28,1925; The picture was taken of a photograph in the Pioneer Café at Bowling Green, IN.