De Zwaan Windmill

Registered Site L2300

De Zwaan Windmill

In 1961 Castle Park resort owner Carter P. Brown proposed the idea of creating a public park with an "authentic Dutch windmill," a symbol of Holland's Dutch heritage. To do so. the city officials needed permission from the Dutch governments, which protects windmills as national monuments. Willard C. Winchers, Midwest director for the Netherlands Information Service, led negotiations with the Dutch over a three-year period. In June 1964 he traveled to the Netherlands to find a suitable mill to finalize arrangements to buy and move it. In Vinkel, Noord Brabant, stood a mill that had been built in 1884 using pieces from older mills. Names De Zwaan (the Swan), it had been damaged during World War II and had deteriorated. Dutch officials allowed the sale but required that Dutch millwright Jan D. Medendorp supervise its relocation and restoration.
photo of De Zwaan Windmill

Side 2

The dismantling of De Zwaan mill in the Netherlands began in June 1964. Its approximately seven thousand pieces, weighing sixty-six tons, were brought to the United States by the Dutch steamship Prins Willem van Oranje It arrived at Muskegon, Michigan, on October 5, 1964. The pieces were moved by truck to this site, were the city had levelled the grounds, removed brush and created canals. Over the next six months, Medendorp supervised the mills reconstruction, including the placement onto a new brick base. He restored its gears to working order, allowing it to mill local grain into flour. Jaap R. de Blecourt, former head gardener at Mackinac Island's Grand Hotel, planned the island's gardens. De Zwaan was dedicated on April 10, 1965, with Governor George Romney and Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands in attendance.
photo of De Zwaan Windmill

City of Port Huron Council exchange delegation to Holland. L-R Planning Dir Haynes, Council Members Lamb, Archibald, Mayor Repp, Council Member Ruiz, City Manager Freed.

Erected 2017

Location: 1 Lincoln Ave
Holland, Ottawa County


Latitude: 42.79864974, Longitude: -86.0954491

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