The Dutch built windmills since without them much of the land drainage could not have occured. The windmills were used to drain the water from low lying lands. Windmills were also constructed for corn milling, saw milling, and a variety of other purposes. Compared to other countries, many of the Dutch windmills are quite primitive with canvas sails, and turned to wind by hand rather than by the automated mechanisms found in English windmills and those of other countries.
I read that there are about 1150 windmills around the Netherlands. There were 19 in a small area where we visited the media launch of the EcoLodge. Today the function of the windmill has been replaced by giant corkscrews, like the one shown here.
There are also a lot of modern wind turbines around the country. However, I was told that despite the country's historic association with windmills, the installation of turbines has almost stopped since they are not economically viable. But that's another story.