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An advertisment from The Miller dated 2nd September 1878. A "Millstone Builder", Bryan Corcoran, located in Mark Lane, London, had both French and Peak millstones for sale. This allows us to directly compare prices and lay the idea that "French" stones were cheaper than Peaks to bed forever.
A pair of 4 foot 4 inch French stones had list price of at between £23-10-00 and £35-05-00
A pair of 4 foot 4 inch finished Peak stones had a list price of £12-00-00 (They are shown individually priced at £6).
This should in fact be no surprise; the cost of transporting stones would have been similar whatever they were made of, but to manufacture a balanced millstone from blocks of chert must have required considerable time and skill. As a result, French stones cost twice as much as Peaks, but were clearly what late 19th century millers wanted: stones that did not discolour the flour and needed minimal maintenance. It is interesting to note that a Peak stone "in the rough" cost £4-10-00 and that "Facing, rounding and cutting out eye" only added a further £1-01-00.
A later ad, in The Miller, dated 5th March 1888, shows millstones at the same prices, but there is an additional line: "Roller Mills from £30; also Iron Rolls & Porcelain Shells". This shows the beginnings of the revolution that overtook British milling in the last decade of the 19th century: roller mills replaced millstones of all kinds. The technology had been developed in central Europe in mid-century and was perfectly suited to the age of steam power and mass produced steel.