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The mill

The Mulino delle Pile has had three different names over time: first it was just the Mill and fulling hammers of Chiusdino, then it was called Mulino delle Pile and finally they called it Mulino Bianco.

It was built by the monks living in the nearby Serena Abbey, but we do not know exactly when that happened, very likely in early 1200.

According to an old document of the sixteenth century, which describes the mill quite roughly, it was a property of Chiusdino municipality for a long time.
The mill was very important to people of Chiusdino, as it enabled them to grind their own wheat; whereas the fulling hammers (tools once used to beat and press woolen fabrics in order to make them harder and more compact) were very useful to thicken clothes produced in Chiusdino until the 15th century and beyond. However, at the beginning they ensured a wider production in order to reach other consumer markets, but later, they were meant just to a more limited local production.

Il Mulino delle Pile was named after its most striking tool, le pile.

“Pile” were in fact those stone washboards where the fulling hammer wooden mechanism, operated by a hydraulic wheel, beat on fabrics while they were soaked in a special solution meant to shrink and thicken them.
Besides, the above mentioned document of the 16th century, points out the presence of a special tool, a kind of rollers board, where it was possible to squeeze, stretch and pull clothes after they had been properly rinsed in clear water.

Throughout the past centuries, many changes have taken place in the mill, but its wheat grinding function has been kept till the second half of 1900.
Enchanting woodland, meadows and a nice river, feature the area where the mill stands; that makes the environment particularly suitable for farm animals breeding. In the 19th century breed of horses developed greatly. In that period the mill was attended by people belonging to different social classes: local farmers were used to meet there in their free time, but it was often attended also by upper-classes representatives, such as Marquis of Luriano, whose castle stood a few kilometres far away.
In the early 1900s the mill was bought by Belli family. Later, in 1920, a Tuscan company of energy supply, the Valdarno, restored it as a power plant.

It was both powerful and useful: in fact it provided people living in Chiusdino and in Monticiano with electricity throughout the Second World War, especially when the public supply system did not work.

However, regardless the important functional changes the mill underwent throughout the years, it always was mainly used for grinding grain till the 70s.
From 1990 to 1995, since it became very popular as testimonial of the biscuits brand Mulino Bianco, the mill has been visited by a lot of people both from any part of Italy and from abroad.


Agriturismo Il Mulino delle Pile

Località il Mulino delle Pile 53012 Chiusdino (Siena)
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Tel: 0577750688 Fax: 0577750686 
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