Custom Windmills

Holstein Windmill

Heideman Mill, The Old Mill

Section 15 of Bloomingdale Township
Bloomingdale, IL 60108


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Partially destroyed by tornado, 1899

Destroyed by owner (unknown date)


(1872 - ?)


Henry Holstein


Henry Holstein (1872 - 1882)

Steinbeck (1882 - 1899)

(unknown) (1899 - ?)




Henry Holstein's residence and windmill.

Photo from the Bloomingdale Public Library



South of Schick Road on the west side of Bloomingdale Road was the farm and residence of Henry Holstein, who built a windmill in 1872.  The mill was one of the largest in the area and designed for large-scale production, built with a wing building, presumably used for shipping or receiving.  It was constructed with a foundation of stone, a wide base, and a self-governing tail fan to turn the cap.
Holstein hired experienced German miller Henry Raap to operate and maintain the mill.  As experienced as Raap was, he narrowly escaped death when a tornado heavily damaged the Holstein Windmill in 1879.  Holstein did not reopen his mill for business until 1882 after painstakingly reconstructing it with improvements, including a third run of stone to increase the mill’s capacity.

Soon after reopening, however, Holstein sold the mill to a man named Steinbeck.  Steinbeck hired Herman Schmoldt to operate the mill with Raap.  When a steam engine was installed, Raap left to work for the railroad.  The mill was destroyed by another tornado in 1899; this time, however, the mill was not rebuilt, but rather “capped” and served the rest of its life as a grain storage space.
The grinding stones now sit in a small park between two benches next to the Bloomingdale Historical Society, north of Schick Road west of Bloomingdale Road.




-1874 Combination Atlas of DuPage County
-“Windward ho!” Addison Press. 26 June 1998.
-Holstein file at the Bloomingdale Public Library
-personal records / observation



Etching of Henry Holstein’s residence from the 1874 Atlas of DuPage County.
Photo of the Holstein windmill from Bloomingdale Public Library.
Photo of the capped windmill after the 1899 tornado from Bloomingdale Public Library. 
Photo of the windmill’s ruins: one set of crumbling stones (2008) by Tom Haskell.
Photo of the millstones sitting next to the Bloomingdale Historical Society building (2008) by Tom Haskell.

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