News & Articles on History of Wind Power

This page was prompted by a technical question about early electricity-generating wind turbines in the United States. The question followed a similar question about “who was the first” to interconnect a wind turbine with an electricity network. There is a lot of confusion internationally about both subjects.

The history of wind energy is a broad subject and many have written about it. I’ve pulled together a list of sources, books, links, and museums that I know about. This list is far from comprehensive. If anyone wants to add to this list or edit this list, please do so.

A number of the entries below are reviews I’ve written of books that include the history of wind energy. The original book can usually be reached from the review. Other news items are relevant to the history of wind turbine development.

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Denmark’s Agricco: History’s First Interconnected Wind Turbine

By

Paul Gipe

In 1919 the utility installed a wind turbine at Buddinge and connected it to its lines—a first worldwide, a full two decades before the Smith-Putnam machine in Vermont was connected to the grid.

Buchenwald’s Liberation and What It Says about the Development of Wind Energy

By

Paul Gipe

Today marks the liberation of the Buchenwald concentration camp in 1945 by the 6th armored division of the US Third Army. Buchenwald is significant for several reasons. 56,000 people died in the camp, some one-quarter of those imprisoned.

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Everything You Need to Know about Wind Energy Was Written in 1957!

By

Paul Gipe

In the research for my new book, Wind Energy for the Rest of Us, I came across several unsung heroes of wind energy development. One of those was French engineer Louis Vadot.

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New Photo of Anderson’s Charles E Miller’s Four-Blade Wind Turbine in 1926

By

Paul Gipe

The Madison County (Indiana) Historical Society was able to locate the photo that I’d seen on display in mid 2015 of Charles E Miller’s 1926 wind turbine in Anderson, Indiana.

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Was Anderson’s Miller First with Pitchable Blade Tips for Wind Turbines?

By

Paul Gipe

Miller is practically unknown among historians for his contribution to wind energy technology. He could be an unsung Hoosier hero for his invention of the pitchable blade tip.

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French Water-Pumping Windmills and Éolienne Bollée

By

Paul Gipe

In the research for my forthcoming book, Wind Energy for the Rest of Us, I came across a lot of intriguing information about the development of wind energy. While fascinating, much of it is too far afield for one book on wind energy. So I am posting these items on my web site so they’re searchable–by me as well as others.