I think of these Saturday day trips as the equivalent of a photographer's scavenger hunt, especially when we are doing specific trips, i.e., barn quilts, scenic byways, historic architecture.
After we left Rockford, the scenic byway took us towards the Surry county seat of Dobson. Taking this particular route took us right by Kapp's Mill, a former gristmill on the Mitchell River. The mill was established in the 1820's and was operated by the Kapp family until the mid-20th century. According to Catherine Bisher's book on North Carolina historic architecture, there was also a general store (now converted to a private family residence), post office and blacksmith shop next to the mill. This is still considered on the best-preserved rural industrial complexes in the state.
The person who owns this property is trying to sell it and the original farmhouse, so if you would like to see the interior of the mill and the beautifully restored house, check out the photographs on Flickr.
Sigh. If I only had $399,000 and was independently wealthy (the commute to my job in Greensboro would be a killer) . . .