Montefiore Windmill, Jerusalem
A wind-powered corn mill in Israel.
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Montefiore Windmill was constructed by the Kent millwrighting firm Holman Brothers. They were commissioned by Sir Moses Montefiore, a banker and philanthropist who donated large amounts of money to aid Jews living in the Holy Land. He hoped to reduce the price of flour for the inhabitants of Jerusalem. The mill began construction in 1857 under the supervision of Thomas Richard Holman. The tower was built of local stone but the internal machinery was made in Canterbury and shipped out to Jaffa, then transported on camels and horses to Jerusalem, a 16 hour journey. The mill was completed in 1858.
By the 1930s the windmill was in disrepair. It was used as an observation and machine gun post during the 1948 war, which resulted in the top being blown off by the British Army in what became known as ‘Operation Don Quixote’. The tower was later restored to full height and a dummy cap and sails were added. The mill has recently been restored by the Dutch organisation Christenen voor Israel with the help of millwright Vincent Pargeter. The new sails turned for the first time on 6 August 2012.
|Alternative names||Jaffa Gate Mill, Moses Montefiore Windmill|
|Mill type||Tower mill|
|Mill function||Corn mill|
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