Golden Gate Park Windmills & Tulips, San Francisco

#33 of 70 in Parks in San Francisco
Garden · Hidden Gem · Landmark
There are two functioning windmills on the western edge of Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, California. The northern Dutch Windmill was completed in 1903, and the southern Murphy Windmill was completed in 1908. The Dutch Mill was placed on the San Francisco Designated Landmark list December 6, 1981, and the Murphy Mill was added July 2, 2000.
In the 1870s and 1880s, Golden Gate Park was planted on sand dunes and required substantial irrigation. In 1902, the Park Commission authorized the construction of two windmills to pump groundwater for park irrigation rather than purchasing water at exorbitant costs from the Spring Valley Water Company. The Dutch Mill was completed one year later and pumped 30,000 gallons per hour. Five years later, the Murphy Mill pumped an additional 40,000 gallons per hour to the park.
Electric water pumps replaced the need for windmills in 1913, and the two mills fell into disrepair. By the 1950s, the mills were in a state of ruin.
In 1964, the San Francisco Citizens Commission for the Restoration of the Golden Gate Park Windmills was formed and led by Eleanor Rossi Crabtree, daughter of former San Francisco mayor Angelo Rossi. The Dutch Mill was restored in 1981. The Queen Wilhelmina Tulip Garden is located next to the Dutch Mill.
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Golden Gate Park Windmills & Tulips reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
78 reviews
  • We wen to Golden Gate Park end enjoyed seeing the beautiful wind mills again. This is a nice area to go for a walk.  more »
  • There are two Dutch windmills on the West end of the park. Both are in excellent condition and much larger than I would have expected. Unfortunately, you can't go inside them- only view them from...  more »

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