Mills of Lercaro House
The Water Mill
The existence of water nascents together with the fertility of their grounds attracted since the first moments, remarkable families that established here their residence after the distribution of the ground that took place to the Spanish conquest.
Immediately, they proceeded to build ditch and dikes that transported the water from the high zones of Aguamansa to the population nucleus. A dike crossed the village of La Orotava from the south to the north, carrying the water to the tanks for its use. Associated to this dike they build upto 13 mills, of which 10 still are conserved, continuing 3 in activity thanks to electricity.
These first mills, as well as the dikes, were made of wood. However, the problems that derived like rot or fires, which through time were reformed by the incorporation of new materials such as stone or mud. They were property of the members of the local elite, who rented them for their exploitation for a canon paid in grain. The state of conservation of the mills and part of the aqueduct, together its enormous representativeness have made valid its declaration of BIC (property of cultural interest). At this moment, it constitutes an element of enormous patrimonial value, reflection of the uses and rural traditions of the Valley of La Orotava.
The Grain Mills
The first bread mills with time gave was at the end to flour mills. In Their origins were done of Tea wood. However, they started to reform at the end of the XVIII century with the incorporation of new materials. Emerging then cubes fabricated with mortar and canals of stone and mud. These mills were assigned to the grinding of cereals, thanks to they obtained a basic food in the diet of the islanders, the gofio. its functioning was due to the water strength, that carried from the ditch that passes through the village. The water falls over the glass and its posterior exit by a hole denominated bocín, exercised the necessary pressure to achieve that a wheel rotated over another that was fixed and so they were able to grind the grain.
Between the principal elements for his functioning underscore the wheel o “rodezno” y las cucharas. The wheel of wood was willing in horizontal position, reinforced with iron hoops and with “cucharas” bolted to his circumference. In the center, with four axes forming a cross, was located a central axes that pushed the wheel.
In the inside of the mill has been restored and it allow us to see an image of how it was in the past, with a reconstruction of its two machines in with stands out the milling stones. Their origins are located in the initial moments of the history of the house, they appear mentioned in the testament of Catalina Grimaldi, first owner of the house.
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- Fernando: 607-331-365