As the story goes, William Ford traveled to Philadelphia for the Centennial Exposition in 1876. William, a farmer from Springwells Township in Wayne County, Mich., took a keen interest in the agricultural displays. One device struck him as particularly useful, a Stover Windmill, or as the Stover Wind Engine Company's advertisement called it, "Stover's Automatic Wind Engine."
We are continuing on our summer project with intern Molly Malcolm to digitize photographs and other materials related to the structures in Greenfield Village. Over the last few weeks, it’s been the turn of Farris Windmill, originally constructed in Cape Cod, Massachusetts in the mid-seventeenth century. This photograph, which appears to capture a newspaper clipping, shows that not every community wanted Henry Ford to purchase and relocate their architectural treasures to Dearborn. On a cheerier note, you can also review close to 100 images showing crowds of Ford dealers at the dedication of the windmill in the Village, and some surprisingly atmospheric shots of the windmill in its earlier locations. Visit our Digital Collections to see more items related to Farris Windmill.
Ellice Engdahl is Digital Collections & Content Manager at The Henry Ford.