Just 10 kilometers south of Saumur, perched atop a hill in the village of Turquant, sits a house and mill that was built in 1749. When the Mill was first constructed it was a part of the Abbaye de Fontevraud. And up until the beginning of the 20th century it served as the bakery for the village of Turquant.
Le Moulin du Val Hulin, which was classified as a historic monument in 1963, just happens to be owned by a friend of Catherine’s. So instead of just viewing the mill and home from the outside, we were lucky enough to be able to visit inside as well. However, since it is still a private residence, I did not take photographs inside the home.
The mill was constructed with the Tuffeau stone extracted from the hill it sits upon. The stone is grey and soft when mined but becomes hard and turns white when exposed to the open air and sunlight. The mining techniques used to extract the valued stone created a vast network of caves in the Loire Valley, which have even been used as dwellings.
These troglodytes cave houses are famous in Turquant.
The Mill is oriented west to better face the wind. However, if the wind happened to change direction, the Miller was able to turn the mill so that it always faced the dominant wind. A few years ago, during a particularly strong storm, the mill was damaged and one of the wings was broken off. It has now been repaired, and is back to its original state.