Morawa Museum banner


Restored Fortescue Economy windmill on display at Morawa museum     The Economy windmill was designed and invented in Australia by Albert John Fortescue of Arncliffe, NSW, in circa 1931. It was patented in 1933. It is sometimes called the Mailbox Economy due to the shape of the helmet protecting the internal gears.

Of particular interest is the patented sail, which was hollow, double-surfaced, screw-pitched and streamlined like an aeroplane propeller. Another of its features was the patented bracket, which allowed the mill to be fitted easily to any existing tower.

It was available in two sizes, 8ft and 12ft. The gearbox was welded, not cast and the entire mill was advertised as being lighter and stronger with fewer parts, making it cheaper to freight and quicker to erect. One of the Super 12 sail, 12ft models was erected at the Seal Ponds at Sydney's Taronga Park Zoo in 1935-36. Restored Fortescue Economy windmill on display at Morawa museum

The earliest date in newspapers for mention of the Fortescue Economy windmill is in April 1931 and the latest date recorded for advertising for the Economy windmill is January 1941.

The Morawa Museum's example of an 8 sail, 8 ft Economy windmill is an early one with the serial number of 117, and was kindly donated by Robert & Pam Kowald of Canna and restored by Patrick & Helen Walter.