Union Mills (Indiana) Conservation Club
It all started with a bean supper! Several individuals, led by the efforts of Kenny Trump, formed the Conservation Club in 1934. The Club needed funding and the supper was a good place to start. The super was initially served in the basement of the Union Mills Presbyterian Church. The Club was officially incorporated in 1938.
In 1936, Carl E. Price and the then current Noble Township Trustee, Fred Hiigli, worked together to have the WPA (Work Progress Administration) develop the Mill Pond Park. According to an article in the October 10, 1936 edition of the South Bend Tribune, the Mill Pond Park became project #7196 for the amount of $70,000. The purpose of the project was to beautify the four-acre body of water, construct three fish hatcheries and a “swimming hole”. The feat was accomplished in 10 months with WPA workers ranging in numbers from 12 to 100 at a time, using shovels and wheel barrels.
In 1963, Paul Kohley, Alvin Sanderson, and Ralph Scurlock laid the ground work for the clubhouse. In 1975, the clubhouse was renovated inside. In 1977, 5.5 acres were purchased from Bob Bailey to expand the park. In 2000, a major reconstruction and renovation project was accomplished, funded by the proceeds from the festivals, a generous donation from Thelma and Bob Mottinger, and the Unity Foundation. It is a meeting place for several organizations, including the Union Mills Conservation Club, which meets on the 4th Monday of each month at 7:00 p.m. -- except December (due to the holidays) and August (the month of the Mill Pond Festival). The Clubhouse is also rented for reunions, wedding receptions and various other affairs.
From the Union Mills Historical Society on Facebook (date unknown)