Bull Creek was a small, tide-affected creek on the southern shore of Brooklyn in the Canarsie/East New York area, most notable for its utility to tide mills in the 18th and 19th centuries (and possibly 17th century?) Tide mills were water mills that used tide action to fill their reservoirs or mill ponds, and then when the tide went out the water drained and powered the water wheel. They could run for about 6 hours two times a day, from mid-tide as the tide was going out until mid-tide of the incoming tide (when the water was any higher, usually, the inertia of the water was too great to turn the wheel, and the differential between the stored high-tide water and the outside water was probably too little anyway.)
The area is near Spring Creek Park, and just east of the end of Flatlands Avenue. In the 18th century a tide-mill built by Van Brunt was located about a little inland along the stream, which was called Bull Creek. About 1810 the mill was taken apart and moved a half-mile south, under the ownership of Jacob Lott Van Wicklen. The creek became known as "Old Mill Creek," presumably because of the 18th-century mill, which was an old mill despite its new location; this mill was in operation at least until 1855.
The above information all comes from http://campus.houghton.edu/webs/employees/jvanwicklin/home%20page/genealogy/FamPages/jlottmill.htm, which also says the following:
(the below is quoted from the website mentioned above, which cites it as an account from area residents Peter Rapelje and his son, Jacob Rapelje, as relayed to the Wicklen family geneologist by a Richard McCool)
This community consisted of the Mill itself, a two and one half story frame hotel with cupola, a few boat houses on each side of the creek; I wouldn't say more than six to eight on each side.
The Old Mill [Creek] ran north and south. At the south end it widened to form a landing. The bank of the creek at the landing was protected by a timber bulkhead which ran about 150 feet southward from the southwest corner of the mill and then broke at right angles westward for another 100 feet and then again at right angles southward to the beginning of the row of boat houses on the west bank.
The Mill itself was a tide mill facing south, a two story frame building with a platform on the west side and double doors opening from the mill building upon a platform and another door in the second story with a loading beam above it. The platform was used for receiving the grain from the farm wagons and shipping the four and bran. The undershot wheel was on the east side of the flood gates opening. As I understand, the mill pond was more or less artificial and was an offshoot of Spring Creek to the east. The water for the mill was held back by two flood gates, one at the east end of the mill and the other down about 800 feet south of the mill across the original Spring Creek. The straight north and south creek to the Old Mill was a dugout. Just south of the mill and flood gate at that point was the basin where the larger boats were anchored. This basin was roughly 200 to 300 feet square.
When I first remember, there were not more than a half dozen of the larger sloops anchored there. One of them was the Cornelia, owned first by Dave Van Wicklen and later by Andrus Forbell. At one time Dick Van Wicklen's schooner, Scud, was anchored there. Sand boats and manure boats came up the creek from time to time.
A map of the region today: