At Nielsby, Føvling Bæk (Føvling Brook) runs out into the river Kongeå. The area is rich in historical relics. Nielsbygård's history dates right back to the Middle Ages. A mill belonged to the farm. The mill's weir was in Føvling Bæk. Lintrup-Hygum and Sønderskov-Tobøl irrigation channels run through Nielsby. A fish farm with weir in Kongeåen was landscaped south of Nielsbygård about 1960.
Nielsbygård (Nielsby Farm)
Nielsbygård is a former manor farm. It is located on the northern bank of the stream by Føvling Bæk. The first time we hear about the farm is in 1390. For a long time, the farm was only a very small manor farm. It was first in 1717 that Nielsbygård collected enough farm property to be able to obtain manor rights. Agricultural reforms in the late 1700s made it possible for the owner of the farm to sell farm property and parcel out parts of the manor farm ground. The main farm shrank in size. In 1946, Nielsbygård was sold to Jordlovsudvalg (State's Land Board), which parcelled off part of the land, while the buildings and the remaining main section were sold as a whole for agricultural purposes.
A few of Nielsbygård's old buildings remain, namely a finance building from 1777 and farmhouse from 1854.
Nielsby Mølle (Nielsby Mill)
It originally belonged to a water mill at Nielsbygård. It was situated at Føvling Brook. It is doubtful whether the mill is as old as the manor farm. The first time we hear about the mill is in 1661. It was then a grass mill, a small water mill, which could only grind in winter. It only ground corn for the manor farm. In the late 1700s, the mill was expanded and began to grind corn for the neighbouring farmers. At the beginning of the 1800s, the mill had two wheels and three grinders as opposed to one wheel and one grinder that it previously had. In the first decades of the 1800s, the water flow was improved and the mill could now grind all year round. Production increased and the mill was separated from the farm. The mill ground corn for the last time in 1937. Cheap electricity for corn grinders had rendered the mill unprofitable.
The mill has now been demolished.
Nielsby Dambrug (Nielsby Fish Farm)
It was then a traditional fish farm with soil-dug ponds and water intake from a weir in Kongeåen. Two years later it was converted into a model fish farm; a recirculating fish farm that recycled water. Water extraction would no longer be done from Kongeåen, but from ground water and drains from under the production plant. The ancient soil ponds were used as "plant lagoons" for the purification of water. The plants consume the remaining nutrients from the water.
Author: Linda Klitmøller, museum curator, Sønderskov Museum