Mechanical Bank Notes — November 1, 2011 at 12:02 am

Windmill Bank

Windmill Bank
Windmill Bank

GRAND AND GRACEFUL are those wind-activated structures so aptly termed “windmills”. One can imagine wispy sails slowly turning in the gentle morning breeze. However, their internal power is revealed by the rotating, weighty granite millstones hidden deep within their structures. (Eloquently capturing this scenario is a poem penned by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow entitled “The Windmill”.)

Our subject, this article, is the “Windmill Bank”. It reflects the popularity of farm and industrial themes employed by late nineteenth and early twentieth century mechanical bank manufacturers, both in this windmill to perform country and abroad.

The “Windmill Bank” is but one of a series of rare and desirable brightly lithographed tin plate mechanicals believed to have been produced some time during the years 1900-1935. To date, no patent papers or manufacturers’ catalogs featuring the “Windmill Bank” have been located.

However, several of its overall mechanical and design characteristics are similar to other tin lithographed mechanical banks created by the Saalheimer and Strauss Tin Works of Nürnberg, Germany. It is, therefore, an assumption that “Windmill Bank” was possibly a product of that company.

Read the complete article in the November 2011 issue of Antique Toy World Magazine. Subscribe today!

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