In 1855, a sawmill was constructed, and it was later purchased by the Richards family in 1868.
In 1903, the Richards were taken to court on charges of violating an early anti-pollution law because they had been using the nearby stream to dispose of their sawdust. This led to the stream becoming clogged, which led to a complaint from another mill further downstream. The Richards lost the case and subsequently added a large burner, which remains at the site today. The Richards family operated the sawmill until 1957, when it was sold to Donald (also known as Dave) Dick.
Balaclava was a thriving farming and industrial center in the late 19th century, but it was never served by a railway, which contributed to its eventual decline. A decrease in the availability of lumber and the failure of local farms also contributed to the town's decline. Despite this, the sawmill continued to run on water power until 1967.
Balaclava became a ghost town after the mill shut down. Mr. Dick also owned the store, which operated until the mid-1970s. Today, a few farms in the area remain in use.
Location ID #BR0121