Milwaukee Harvester Co.

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Photo Courtesy David Schnakenberg
This ad for the Milwaukee Harvester Co. was produced by Niagara Lithograph Co., Buffalo, N.Y., in about 1890. 

In about 1890, Niagara Lithograph Co., Buffalo, N.Y., produced this chromolithograph for Milwaukee (Wis.) Harvester Co. with images of its horse-drawn grain binder and mowing machine. The company used as a trademark a circular image of four mower sections pointed together with the phrase “The Milwaukee Leads.” The binder’s windboard canvas also proudly displayed the name “Milwaukee” as its logo.

This company’s beginnings date to 1850, when Israel S. Love built approximately 50 “Fountain” reapers. In 1852 the partnership of Love & Otis was formed; the company built self-rake reapers during 1851-52. Other partnerships formed during 1854-57 included Love & Orton and Love & Stone. In 1857 a new firm of Parker & Stone was organized and the company built the “Beloit” reaper to be a strong competitor to McCormick.

In 1876, in association with John Appleby, Charles Parker and Gustavus Stone, the company built the first successful twine binder in the world, the Beloit-Appleby binder. The company changed its name to Parker & Dennett in 1877. For unknown reasons, the Parker & Dennett shop was taken over by other parties in 1880. This forced the partners to seek a new location.

In December 1881, a stock company was formed in Milwaukee known as Parker-Dennett Harvesting Machine Co. The company continued to manufacture grain harvesters, binders and mowers. The final name change to Milwaukee Harvester Co. came in 1884. The company added corn harvesters and husker/shredders to their line in 1895. When International Harvester Co. was formed in 1902, Milwaukee Harvester Co. shareholders turned in their shares for cash. FC

Grateful acknowledgement is given to David Schnakenberg, who contributed this image from his collection of pre-1910 chromolithographs of farm machinery advertising. For more information, contact him at 10108 Tamarack Dr., Vienna, VA 22182; (703) 938-8606;; view the Schnakenberg Collection.

To submit a vintage advertisement for publication, send it to: Iron Age Ads, Farm Collector, 1503 S.W. 42nd St., Topeka, KS 66609; or submit high-quality digital images by email:

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