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Birdsall traction engine

Steve Davis

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Early Birdsall traction engine, about 10-12 HP, at the Mt. Washington Cog Railway. New Hampshire. This Birdsall was made in Auburn. New York. The company had earlier been located in Penn Yan, NY, and later on in Newark. NY. Sent by Steve Davis. RD 2, Box 842, West Winfield. NY 13491. Steve was driving the tour bus parked behind the engine; it gives a good size comparison.

I have the old picture that I had this copied from, the same size. I do not know the history. I found this in an old dresser drawer when we bought a very old bedroom set. It had belonged to an old bachelor who, I believe, lived in Washington State. I believe this photo was taken there. I do not know any names. Perhaps someone might recognize the engine. I do not. Sent by Owen Arnett, 17178 Madison Road, Nampa, Idaho 83687.

William Supplee, 1893 Shadyside Rd., Coatesville, PA 19320 visited our offices some time ago and dropped off this picture showing an engine which crashed through the 1852 Hoopes-Kerr covered bridge near Downingtown, Pa. Text taken from the book Covered Bridges of Chester County, Pennsylvania, by Arthur E. James, describes the accident as follows: 'On May 13, 1907, when Franklin Malin was driving an eight ton steam engine across the bridge, it gave way with the engine falling into the Brandywine [Creek]. Mr. Malin was killed and his companion on the engine was seriously injured.' The steel structure seen in the background at right was erected in the early 1900s by the Pennsylvania Railroad to carry its Low Grade Freight Line.

Bill Steinman, 1101 Broad Ave., Findlay, Ohio 45840 sent this picture of his friend Duane Clegg making a spark show with his 12 HP Frick about 10 years ago at the NWOMA show at Findlay. Duane, an active member of several engine associations, passed away in September 1994.

'Here's a photo that tells all: Steam engine man John Schrock, himself, with a 16 HP Gaar Scott or Advance Scott (John has trouble with stacks), getting ready for the great block race in Mason, Michigan. Note in the background Denny Smalley and Carl Tottle are watching John closely. He's been known to cheat slightly.' Submitted by Judge Honest and Sincerely, four years going.