November 10 - 1935: Henry Ford takes our favorite windmill

Cape Codders and visitors rally to save Judah Baker windmill. 1891 The first-ever WCTU meeting held in Boston
Henry Ford accused of "mill-knapping" our oldest windmill

1935: Cape Cod resents Henry Ford taking its favorite windmill

He's accused of "mill-knapping" our oldest windmill

In 1935, Henry Ford managed to get the collective dander up of Cape Codders and visitors by trying to buy our oldest windmill and moving it to Dearborn, Michigan. The Yarmouth windmill takes its name from its original builder, Judah Baker, who had the mill constructed in 1791.

Like many early windmills on Cape Cod, this mill experienced several moves before it came to its current location. Originating in South Dennis, it was moved to Kelley's Pond, in Dennis, and later to the Yarmouth side of Bass River.

The brouhaha began in 1935 when Henry Ford tried to buy it, according to a newspaper article that began:

Officials and Business Groups Protest His Plan
to Remove Landmark to Dearborn


22,000 Ford Workers Are Said to Have Contributed
to Purchase of Historic Structure.

WEST YARMOUTH, Mass., Nov. 10. -- Cape Cod raised its collective voice today in apparently unanimous resentment at the proposed removal from this historic section, by Henry Ford, of America's oldest windmill.

Read the rest of the story below...

See "Everything Else Which Happened Today" including in 1891 the first-ever Women's Christian Temperance Union meeting Boston.

The crusade against alcohol was a protest by women, in part, of their lack of civil rights. Women could not vote. In most states women could not have control of their property or custody of their children in case of divorce. There were no legal protections for women and children, prosecutions for rape were rare, and the state-regulated "age of consent" was as low as seven.

The WCTU has proposed, supported, and helped establish:

  • Protection of women and children at home and work
  • Women's right to vote
  • Shelters for abused women and children
  • The eight-hour work day
  • Equal pay for equal work
  • founding of kindergartens
  • Assistance in founding of the PTA
  • Federal aid for education
  • Stiffer penalties for sexual crimes against girls and women
  • Uniform marriage and divorce laws
  • Dress reform
  • Travelers' aid
  • Prison reform and police matrons
  • Women police officers
  • Homes and education for wayward girls
  • Promotion of nutrition
  • Pure food and drug act
  • Legal aid
  • Labor's right to organize
  • Passive demonstrations and world peace

The WCTU has opposed and worked against:

  • The drug traffic
  • The use of alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs
  • White slavery
  • Child labor
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