Although I have conducted research on these windmills for years, sources for information are scarce. If you have any information—pictures, postcards, articles, genealogical records, official documents, personal stories—about any of the windmills in Illinois (even those already listed), I urge you send an e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note that Illinois Windmills is an educational web site; inquiries regarding sales, investments, or other business matters will be dismissed.
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I am originally from Elk Grove Village, IL and currently reside in Joliet, IL with my wife and son. I have been fascinated by windmills since the age of two, when our family would make trips to Mount Emblem Cemetery to visit the grave of my aunt. In those days, visitors were allowed to freely roam about the Fischer Windmill, which I remember well.
Years later on a trip to Geneva, I discovered the Fabyan Windmill. Until then, I was unaware that there were other windmills of this kind in Illinois. An investigation on the Internet unveiled two more windmills—those in Peotone and Golden.
By complete chance, I stumbled upon Philip E. Vierling’s The Fischer Windmill at the Richard J. Daley Library at UIC. Using the university’s resources, I began thoroughly investigating the histories of the windmills in Illinois, gradually discovering more mills that were previously lost in time. When the website was launched as a Yahoo! Geocities site in May 2005, I was aware of just seven custom windmills. Through public speaking, visiting historical societies’ archives, and Internet searches, my database has grown to include over fifty custom windmills and the list keeps growing.
The Fischer Windmill in full sail under the ownership of Edward Ehlers
Photo from Norma Asche-Lagerhausen