Sundgau, land of mills
In 19e century, more than two hundred mills were in operation along the rivers of this small "southern county": flour mills, oil mills, hemp drums, sawmills, stationeries, swift forges.
Each mill is a masterpiece of ingenuity: simplicity and efficiency of the mechanisms, perfect knowledge of the surrounding natural environment, perfect adaptation to the assets and constraints of this environment.
Discovering the mills of Sundgau is finding techniques and knowledge that are sometimes forgotten, it is reviving an entire rural society, it is also renewing the way we look at our environment.
At the end of the 80s, Bertrand ALBISSER sought to realize his dream: to buy and restore a typical Sundgau farm. It was in Buethwiller that he found the rare pearl, the farmyard of his dreams. From then on, he will devote all his free time to his restoration. And what a restoration! Respect for old techniques (frameworks, cob), choice of the most noble materials (stone, flat tiles ...): the result is striking and raises the old Buethwiller building to the rank of the most beautiful achievements of the Ecomuseum.
Electric motor, leather belts, grindstones for crushing nuts, stuffer for rapeseed, oven and steamer for heating the dough, hydraulic press: each element is in its place. Our tireless entrepreneur now wishes to open his mill to visitors in order to share his passion: during the next heritage days, for example, or for local school children, enthusiasts or families and invite you to contact him on 03.89.25.32.04 to make an appointment.
The Courtelevant mill located on the banks of the Vendeline dates back to the 1855th century and is listed in the additional inventory of Historic Monuments. Sold after the Revolution, a fire almost completely destroyed it in XNUMX. A new mill was then built and the old mill was transformed into a dwelling house.
A hydraulic wheel of about 5 meters in diameter was put in place along with the most modern processes of the time in order to produce very good quality flour.
The same family operated it for a century before it was gradually abandoned in 1905, the victim of the establishment of large flour mills with lower production costs.
This mill from 1855 remained untouched and the whole was kept in exceptional condition.
The association "Les Amis du Moulin de Courtelevant" was created in 1988 with the aims of safeguarding, restoring and animating the mill.
Thus, after major renovations, this mill, now the Museum of grinding techniques, produces flour thanks to a team of enthusiasts.
The Hundsbach mill stopped working in 1925. If outside the bucket wheel disappeared as well as the water supply pipe, inside everything remained in place: the machinery (three pairs of grinding wheels) as well than the worker's bedroom upstairs.
We are in the presence of a mill asleep after centuries of operation. The current building dates from the 18th century but the existence of this mill is attested from 1394.
The owners of the place, with the help of an association, undertook to restore all the buildings and to give life to this mill which is an important part of the heritage of the Thalbach valley, by opening it to public.
The charming guest rooms "la meunière" welcome you in this unique and verdant setting in the heart of the Hundsbach valley, a paradise for cyclists and hikers.
Guided tour :
Visit for individuals and groups by reservation from April to October, and during the Heritage Fair (September), National Moulins Day (June), and the Melhi'arts (August).
Upstairs the miller's room shelters many practical or unusual objects, testimonies of the habits and customs of yesteryear.
The mill is located in a beautiful natural and green setting in summer, which receives many grooms for wedding photos ...
A warm space can be made available to groups during visits (shelters, glass of friendship, meal from the bag ...) inquire as you wish ...
Visit for individuals or groups from March to October.