Kfarmatta, located near Souk El Ghareb on the way to Aley, is home to an old abandoned silk mill. Quite appropriate being 15 minutes away from the Silk Museum, this structure is left standing in the wilderness.
The mill is still in pretty good shape considering it’s completely forgotten. All of the shattered red shingles are still there in piles surrounding the sandstone walls, trees have overtaken the interior, most of the upper floor has crumbled, and the entire roof has collapsed. Silk mills are where machines are used to make silk into thread. Based on what I’ve read, most mills used water wheels to create a power source for the spinning machines that were set up in a large space. The main room of this particular silk mill seems to be where the working stations were. The well is not that far off and there is some form of piping/irrigation system that leads back to the large room. I will find out more about this upon my visit to the Silk Museum in Bsous.
Floor plans and other architectural renderings of the mill (dated 1975) can be accessed on the AUB website here.
Oddly enough, when googled, the land comes up on a property website for $7.2 million ($200/sqm). I don’t see that sale happening anytime soon, but honestly that makes me very happy because it’s quite the site to see. Just look at the view from the artesian well: