Local Favorite:


| February 2001


A simple idea that worked: that's all it took to set the New Holland engine apart. The New Holland was a popular engine in its day, and remains popular with a core of avid collectors more than 100 years later.

The New Holland Machine Works was founded in 1895 in New Holland, Penn., by Abram M. Zimmerman. Zimmerman trained as an apprentice at the Ezra Landis Machine Works in Lancaster, Penn. He then worked for P.E. Shirk, operator of the Blue Ball (Penn.) Machine Works, which later produced the Shirk tractor.

Zimmerman's company was established on Luther Avenue (now North Railroad). Initially, the company focused on engine repair. But by 1897, the company developed its first real marketable product: a corn grinding mill with sandstone grinding wheels. Soon after, New Holland began production of hog troughs and water tanks.

New Holland was rebuilding secondhand engines when, in 1898, the company became a dealer for the Columbus Gas Engine. Many of the early Columbus engines ran only on natural gas, making them useless to the farmer who had no access to city gas mains. Sensing a market for engines to power the mills he was already producing, Zimmerman created a device converting the engines to gasoline.

A year later, he applied for (and received) a patent for a cob grinder with an adjustable grinding plate. That machine proved very popular, and was built by New Holland into the late 1920s.

By 1901, Zimmerman had built his first gas engine: a 1 1/2 hp engine based on the Otto Cycle Principle. Because most small engines of the era were water cooled, Zimmerman sought to develop one that was freeze-proof. The lowly hog trough produced by New Holland in its earliest years may have provided inspiration for the engine's unique feature: a V-shaped water hopper created expansion space for ice, thereby preventing broken castings in freezing temperatures. Zimmerman was quick to secure a patent on his 1 1/2 hp 'freeze proof' engine, a model that would become popular on the farm and, years later, with collectors.






SUBSCRIBE TO FARM COLLECTOR TODAY!

Farm Collector April 16Farm Collector is a monthly magazine focusing on antique tractors and all kinds of antique farm equipment. If it's old and from the farm, we're interested in it!

Save Even More Money with our SQUARE-DEAL Plan!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our SQUARE-DEAL automatic renewal savings plan. You'll get 12 issues of Farm Collector for only $24.95 (USA only).

Or, Bill Me Later and send me one year of Farm Collector for just $29.95.




Facebook Pinterest YouTube


Copyright 2018, All Rights Reserved
Ogden Publications, Inc., 1503 SW 42nd St., Topeka, Kansas 66609-1265