Andrew Meikle (1719-1811)

Andrew Meikle (1719-1811)

Millwright and inventor of the threshing machine

Andrew Meikle was born at Houston Mill in East Lothian. His father was an inventor and agricultural improver responsible for an automated fanner for winnowing grain. Andrew followed in his father's footsteps developing the design of the windmill in 1750 and in 1768 patenting a machine for dressing grain. His most remarkable invention was a drum threshing machine that could be powered in a variety of ways. In 1788 he took out a patent and set up a factory.

Unfortunately his inventions did not bring financial success. He was financially supported by friends in his old age. Preston Mill in East Lothian is one of the mills Andrew worked on and it is preserved in its original form by the National Trust for Scotland.

Testament of Andrew Meikle

(National Records of Scotland, CC8/8/139 pp 462-463)

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