Researching a reel mower

I receive your magazine and enjoy it very much. There are always many interesting articles and ads. Does anybody know about old reel lawn mowers? I have one that was my grandfather’s, so it would be at least 80 years old. Cast into its steel wheels is “Caldwell Lawn Mower Co., New Burgh, N.Y. GN88,” which is probably the model number. No other writing, letters or numbers are on the mower. The reel is 16 inches wide with only four bars (reel mowers today have five bars). Is the company still in business? Any information would be nice.

John Ernst
3242 Utah Ave. N.E.
Iowa City, IA 52240
(319) 643-5450

Editor’s note: According to an article on, Thomas Coldwell began building lawn mowers in 1852 in Newburgh, N.Y. After Coldwell’s death in 1905, his son William took over the company, which remained in business for at least another 10 years. Ultimately, reports Old and Sold, Coldwell was taken over by the Toro Co., Minneapolis, Minn. Varying accounts spell the Coldwell name differently (Coldwell and Caldwell) but all place the company at Newburgh.

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