History Part 3
A section of a two-and-a-half-foot thick stone wall had to be taken out of Snavely’s mill house; an extension was added to the building; concrete pillars were poured to support a floor which was lowered to accommodate some of the new machinery; and a new storage bin was purchased to allow for the production of much more flour – all in preparation for the shiny red and blue mill which was crossing the north Atlantic in the hold of a ship. From the port of Philadelphia, tractor-trailers carried the disassembled mill beyond Lititz, through the village of Lexington, to its new home on Snavely Mill Road.
Realizing the relative ease with which Snavely purchased and had his new equipment delivered to the loading dock of his mill house, one is reminded of the arduous process which brought sophisticated gears and mill works to the grist mill which had been built across Snavely’s pond at the beginning of the eighteenth century. From the wharves along the Delaware River at Philadelphia, imported manufactured articles traveled by wagon to the Market Street Ferry across the Schuylkill River and then westward in the lumbering precursors of the great Conestoga freight wagons on the old Conestoga Road toward Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and finally, from the road head, to their ultimate destination by pack horses.
The Roncaglia Company sent help to install the equipment, engineer Aminur Rahman. A native of Bangladesh, Rahman studied mechanical engineering at Dacca Polytechnic Institute and for the past six years has worked for the Italian firm. In addition to his native Bengali, Rahman speaks fluent French, Spanish, Italian and English. With some help from local labor, Rahman put the ultra-modern mill together.
Rahman lived with the Snavelys "as one of the family” for the four months that he worked on the installation. When he finished the job at Snavely’s Mill, another Roncagia assignment awaited him in Venezuela.
Snavely has employed two men at his mill for several years. One will now move to the multi-buttoned console of the high-powered electrical apparatus. The other will continue at the water-driven works. Side by side, the antique canvas conveyor belts, housed in their smooth wooden panels and the modern gleaming stainless and glass pneumatic tubes will carry the grains and flours of Snavely’s mill.