WIND AND WATER POWER IN 1774
Before the advent of steam engines, mills were the most ingenious machines in common use. The oldest existing mill in the Low Countries dates from 1183 and was built in Wormhout. Important applications of mills were grinding grain, pumping water and sawing wood.
The Quetelet Center made a detailed survey map of the mill distribution based on the Ferraris map around 1774 (database STREAM) . This map was published in an article by Alain Goublomme (chairman of Molenforum Vlaanderen and Oost-Vlaamse Molens vzw) and Wouter Ronsijn (researcher of the Bocconi University in Milan and UGent) on the occasion of the expo Naar molens kijken (looking at mills) at the heritage site Ename. The red dots are windmills concentrated in the northwest and north. The blue dots represent water mills which were mainly to be found in areas with differences in altitude.
Alain Goublomme, Wouter Ronsijn. “Kijken naar molenland”. G/oud: geschiedenis van Oudenaarde en Omgeving, 1, (2021): 32-39.