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Monday, July 11, 2011



In the days when Morne Sion was used for growing sugar cane there were also the 3 windmills used for crushing the cane , the remains of which are  still visible in the area. 

The mill at Gastonette was recently partially restored , the picture below is of a similar windmill in Martinique that has been fully restored.

Windmill in Martinique
 The mechanism would have been relatively simple consisting of 2 heavy wooden rollers connected to a vertical shaft by cogs, the vertical shaft in turn being rotated by another cog connected to the sails. The cane would have been fed through the rollers by hand and the resulting juice was carried by lead pipes about a foot in diameter to the boiling factory by Milos between the Trou Marc river mouth and Anse Pappy. The chimney is still quite intact and the foundations of the walls still visible.

If there was no wind or a glut of cane, then bundles were ferried over the valley on a wire and pulley system to Delcer where there was a water mill (the building behind Delcer school) which was powered by water from the old irrigation system in the area. Presumably the cane juice was taken in barrels by cart to the factory from here.

 If anyone has further information then I would be happy to receive it. Thanks to Mr Cletus Thomas for his input.

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