East of the Blue Ridge

Chronicles of an On30 quarry railroad

Rails to Schuyler - Dust Mill

As the quarry spur of the Nelson & Albemarle Railroad approaches Schuyler from the southeast, it passes the Dust Mill.

Here railroad cars were loaded with finely milled soapstone dust, which was sold as industrial grade talc. Used in the manufacture of tires, paint, and concrete, the dust was ground from waste stone from the quarries, and cut-offs and scrap slabs from the mill.

The north wall of the existing dust mill building clearly shows the roofline of an adjoining building that is no longer standing.

The "missing" building stretched far to the north, and apparently contained the actual milling machinery that was used to grind the soapstone. The milling machinery was moved to Schuyler when Virginia Alberene bought Old Dominion Soapstone, who had built their mill at Damon, Virginia.

There is a railroad grade along the top of the retaining wall at the upper left, and along the far right.

By the time I first visited Schuyler, the Dust Mill had already burned, and most of the equipment had been scrapped.

Most everything inside the existing Dust Mill building had been removed and scrapped also.

Following the railroad grades toward the main mill, the tracks past close by the shops.