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Photographer's Note

Some information from Wikipedia about the historic mill that stands in the grounds of Sanssouci Palace, Potsdam.

In 1736 the soldier king, Frederick William I of Prussia, gave permission for the construction of a windmill, which was started in 1737. This first windmill, completed in 1738, was a post mill, whose entire superstructure, supported on a wooden post, was turned "into the wind" depending on the wind direction. The first mill and actual Historic Mill was thus older than the nearby summer palace known as Sanssouci, built in the years 1745 to 1747 for Frederick the Great.

A half-century later the, by now dilapidated, post mill had to be demolished. The construction of a new mill, between 1787 and 1791, was financed by Frederick William II, because the mill had become famous far beyond the city of Potsdam as the result of a legend. The task was given to the master builder, Cornelius Wilhelm van der Bosch, who erected a bigger smock mill based on the Dutch prototype in place of the post mill.

Following the accession of Frederick William IV in 1840, the landscape architect, Peter Joseph Lenn, smartened up the area around the mill. In connection with this, a triumphal way was planned by the king, in honour of Frederick the Great, but it was only partially realised. It was intended to incorporate the Historic Mill into this project as the road was to run from the Gate of Triumph, east of Sanssouci Park, and run past the newly built Orangery Palace to the Belvedere on the Klausberg. The March Revolution of 1848 and a lack of finance, however, meant that this grand project came to nothing.

In 1858 the last miller finished his tenancy. Because the king refused to allow other applicants to run the mill, the building became open to visitors in 1861.

At the end of the Second World War, on 27 April 1945, a Soviet tank was hit by a panzerfaust between the mill and the drive up to Sanssouci Palace. In the battle that followed the mill and the Swiss house at its foot were set ablaze. Both buildings were destroyed, the Swiss house (Schweizerhaus) was not rebuilt.

In 1983 the Potsdam Chamber of Commerce began the restoration of the stone base. This work had to be stopped in 1990 due to financial difficulties. At the end of 1991, the rebuilding work was able to start again thanks to donations from the state of Brandenburg, the North Rhine-Westphalia Foundation and the then Potsdam-Sanssouci Foundation of Prussian Palaces and Gardens. The present smock mill is a replica of the one built from 1787 to 1791 and the third so-called and somit Historic Mill. It had to be planned from photographs and measurements of the mill foundations, because the construction drawings by Cornelius Wilhelm van der Bosch were no longer available.

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Additional Photos by Stephen Nunney (snunney) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 10627 W: 63 N: 29874] (130967)
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