17th Panel

THE MILL OF TEMPINI FAMILY THAT NOW IS A MILL-MUSEUM

This mill was already active in the fifteenth century, but it was largely destroyed during the flood occurred in 1634; after the arrangement of the seventeenth century it has been nearly preserved intact till the present time.
It was owned by Tempini Family that lived in the great Palace overlooking the Square above the mill and it was sold to the Municipal Administration of Bienno, which after the renovation turned it into a Museum. It preserves in excellent conditions the millstones used for maize grinding, while the millstones for the wheat and buckwheat grinding were no longer active even before the passing of property.
The mill has been running for four generations by the Denage family.
The architectural structure has preserved its original characteristics both in its interior and outside. Its position is remarkable, in fact it is situated at the foundations of a high wall under a square, which was the main square of the country and it is connected to it through a cobbled paving staircase. Its main façade is characterized by the ground floor entrance to the mill and the stone staircase that leads to the first floor, where lived the miller.
The upper rooms are lit by a few small windows, as on the side in direct contact with the duct, while the other two sides are leaning, the one at the back of the high wall below the square and the other to the east that looks directly on to the Vaso Ré (the Rè duct).
The sight of the rigorous wooden pipe that takes the water to the big wheel, quite different than those of the hammers, both in diameter and in structure, is remarkable.
On the ground floor there are still the cobblestone paving and the original vaults that characterize the interior of the mill; here is placed the structure of the equipment that moves the millstones.
These ones are contained in a lime wooden roll used for its flexibility, placed on a wooden paving under which there are the cogwheels that move the millstones and they are in their turn driven by the érbor and the wheel.
Above the millstones there is the hopper that is a container with a frustum of pyramid shape that holds the corns of the maize that fall few at a time on the millstones, thanks to the vibration created by two wooden small sticks hammering between the hopper and the millstones. It is to be pointed out that only the upper millstone moves by rubbing on the inferior one that is idle and during its movement it crumbles the corns.
The meal goes a short way in a conduit and gets in a particular sieve contained in a wooden kneading, called sifter; this particular sieve, thanks to the continuous movement created again by sticks that hammer rhythmically, separates the flour from the bran. At the first and second floor you can visit the home of the miller, preserved intact in its original arrangement.