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Brent's Grist Mill - The Building of a Mill and a Community
Central Okanagan Heritage Society
Kelowna , British Columbia


   Frederick Brent was one of
the earliest settlers in the
Kelowna region of British
Columbia and when he built a
grist mill there in 1871 it
was the first industrial
enterprise in the Okanagan
Valley. It was an amazing
accomplishment. Brent went to
San Francisco to find what he

needed, then imported a
portable mill, a hopper and
other necessary supplies. It
took a ship, freight wagon,
river steamer, borrowed home-
made wagon, row boat, and
horse-drawn sledge to get the
mill to its new home on
Brent's land. It was a
testimony to pioneer

   Through photographs,
images and text, this
exhibition explores and
brings to life the story of
Brent and the mill's arduous
journey. But it is more than
just the tale of a man and a
mill. It shows the
relationship of the mill to a

growing community within an
agricultural economy and
underscores its importance as
an example of the legacy of
the early pioneers. The
exhibition ultimately
discovers that the grist mill
is an apt metaphor for a
province searching for roots
beyond the fur trade economy

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