Het Jonge Schaap
Kalverringdijk 31a
1509 BT Zaandam
Zaanse Schans

(+31) (0)75 6401377

Opening times

Open daily: 09.30-16.30 uur

- First Christmas Day
King's Day (april 27th)

Mills existed for about 6,000 years. Windmills other hand, are a fairly recent invention. Wind-powered saw mills could only occur after the invention of the crankshaft in 1592. Since that time, there are about 600 saw-mills stood in Zaandam. Young Sheep is a wonderful working example of the mills which have stood at the base of the Golden Age.

Windmills are a fairly recent invention. It is still a matter of debate, but it is generally assumed that the first windmills around 950 after Christ were built in Persia, now Iran. Ancient civilizations (Greeks, Chinese, Romans, Babylonians, Egyptians, etc.) knew or windmills but were water mills and mills that were powered by muscular power of animals or humans. The Persians built a mill with a vertical axis, focus on the prevailing wind direction on the ground. This type of mill was still in use until about 1970 in present-day Iran.

The idea of ​​the windmill was possibly taken by the Crusaders in the Middle Ages increasingly used in Europe. As the ashes were placed horizontally and got the mill more or less the form as we know it today. Well known are the windmills in Greece and Spain (Don Quixote): stone mills with up to twelve sails. Further, northern (corn) mills built on the ramparts and walls. These mills were dependent on a single direction and unusable for example in the Netherlands. There was therefore a need invention so that the vanes could be rotated on the wind. The mill was the invention. Also known as default or post mill this mill in the 12th century was developed outside the Netherlands today. In this type was used in the Netherlands during the 13th century. The mill is rotatable in its entirety about a central spindle.

In 1596, the crankshaft was first used in a mill. As a result, the revolving movement of the blades could be converted into an up and down movement which is required for, for example, cutting of wood. At that time there were already naturally mills used for grinding and pumping.

Young Sheep, a sawmill type smock, was built in 1680 and was in operation until 1935. Under the influence of steam sawmill he became redundant and a rescue plan failed by the outbreak of World War II. He was, however, scrapped only after he late 30s fully measured and was designed by architect Anton Sipman.
The mill was Schaep family. That family had several mills which Young Sheep (formerly known as Big Sheep or 't Skaepie) was the latest addition. The family Schaep was active in the new industry of wood sawing and had previously lumber mills that White Sheep and Black Sheep were called. After the construction of the Jonge Schaap (or Big Sheep) the older mill White Sheep was downgraded to Little Sheep.

With the invention of the crankshaft in 1592 by Cornelis Cormelisz. Uitgeest became possible except to grind also chopping, pounding and sawing.

The Zaanstreek developed from about 1600 to a very important industrial area. Windmills in all shapes and sizes produced include wood, oil, paper, flour and paint. There was sawed, peeled, ground, followed, knocked and pounded. One and a half centuries, there were hundreds of windmills in Zaandam. After 1750 came with the decline of prosperity in the Netherlands, an end to the heyday of the windmill.