Windmills in the salinas of the Turks and Caicos Islands


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windmills Windmills in the salinas of the Turks and Caicos Islands

For a number of years the National Museum of the Turks and Caicos has been investigating the windmills which once helped move the brine around the salinas as part of the islands salt industry. They even went as far in 1997 as to recover a 200pound cast iron millhead, with the objective of learning more about its construction, and possibly allowing them to rebuild a working machine. However even with the recovered hub and millhead, and with measurements taken from a survey of a number of other partial survivors, they don't feel they yet have enough information to proceed. Of the 50 mills that once existed, only 2 are in anywhere near working condition, the harsh salt conditions are tough on the metal parts, and the industry has been extinct for a couple of generations, so those that built and worked the mills have since died off.

The islands' Chamber of Commerce has now become involved in the plan to restore the windmills on Grand Turk, and have contacted me to see if I can help locate any construction plans or other details for the windmills. The mills are built of metal, (with wooden sails) including some heavyweight castings, so were obviously manufactured in some numbers. Does anyone know of any source of further information about their manufacture. Please let me know if you do.

I've located a number of images of the mills, in case that helps jog your memory: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.
Item: #500, Posted: 25/8/05.


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