The story of a forgotten America.

August 13: Klotz Throwing Company Tour Information

Couldn’t make the June 2011 meet for the Klotz Throwing Company? Looking to explore and photograph the last standing original silk mill intact in the US?

Couldn’t make the June 18, 2011 meet for the Klotz Throwing Company? Looking to explore and photograph the last standing original silk mill intact in the United States?

Well, thanks to the generosities of Mr. Crawford, the owner, the Klotz Throwing Company will be open for another tour on Saturday August 13!

Here is text from the original blog entry:

It is not all too often that one is given the opportunity to have the chance to photograph something in its pristine condition, one without graffiti, disturbance and obsession. But this may be one of the last chances to do so, at least for the Klotz Throwing Company in western Maryland.

Closed back in 1957, Klotz was known as the last silk mill in the United States and remains in the same condition as the day it closed over fifty years ago, although with more wear and tear – and decay, mold and rust. It has been owned for the last 33 years by one individual, whose intent was to preserve and save the mill for future generations. But that time may be coming to a close.

The mill is in poor condition and needs major repairs to keep the building in a stable condition. The owner has been charging $75 per person for the privilege to photograph the mill, which I consider to be a small amount to pay considering what is required. Makeshift boards patch gaping holes in the floor, and supporting timber is in poor condition due to years of water damage. The owner has received an offer for an individual from Washington state to come in and salvage the mill – that is, unless some preservation organization steps in and helps obtain funding to stabilize the mill from further debasement. And for the last several decades, no realistic offers have come in to help save the mill, so scrapping it may be the only option remaining.

Save the date: August 13. Help preserve the mill by coming out and photographing the mill. A minimum of five persons is required for the excursion, which is a “go where you want” event. A minimum $75 payment is required to access the property, which goes to help save the mill from becoming part of the scrap heap in a landfill.


  • When: August 13, 2011
  • Where: Klotz Throwing Company, Lonaconing, Maryland
  • Fee: $75, cash only
  • Who: YOU. Photographers, historians, architects, anyone with a vested interest in saving the last silk mill in the United States.

E-Mail, call or leave a comment if you are interested in going!


Add Yours →

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August 1, 2011 Hi Sherman,My wife and I would be interested as well in coinmg to photograph the mill. We are located in the Northeast corner of MD in Elkton.Could you please contact me by email with your contact info for arrangements?Thanks for helping to put this together!Best regards,Robert Walters

Hello Sherman, wonderful photos and location ! My girlfriend and i are very interested in a late september to early october photo expedition. We both are history buffs from lancaster, pennsylvania. This location particularly interests me as lancaster is home to the Stehli Silk Mill. The Stehli still stands (beautiful architecture) but does not have any original equipment or memories of the past. We are extremely interested in making the 3 hour trip for the thrill to see the Lonaconing Mill. Please contact me via email or phone with any information that may be helpful to making this happen. Thank you and have a great day.



Hi Sherman,

My wife and I would be interested as well in coming to photograph the mill. We are located in the Northeast corner of MD in Elkton.

Could you please contact me by email with your contact info for arrangements?

Thanks for helping to put this together!

Best regards,

Robert Walters

1. The length of time allowed is 5 hours. It provides plenty of time to really photograph the mill's three floors. I was thinking it might be a bit short on my first visit, but it wasn't.

2. Yes – I can pass along contact in private with the owner's permission.

3. Yes, please call me.

If you want to come along with this group – please let me know. I don't have a list for this yet, per se, and the mill can really accommodate about 15 or so without feeling too crowded.

Would like more info on Aug 13th tour.

I am President of the Northern Virginia Photographic Society. A group of us would like to come take photos at the mill.

1. How long can we stay photographing in the mill?

2. Can any other date be arranged for a group?

3. Is there a phone number to call with questions?



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