As far as we know there were only two companies that attempted
four wheel drive steamers. They were tried very early in the
traction engine life. In 1886 or 87, the Wood, Tabor and Morse Co.,
of Eaton,N . Y., built one with spur sears. As far as we know they
only built them about two years. Evidently they were not a success.
When you look at that train of gears you wonder where they got the
power to run the gears. The Ford Museum has one of these engines on
display. It is one of the most interesting pieces In the Farm
The Lansing Iron and Engine Works of Lansing, Mich., built a
four wheel drive in 1888. They continued to build them until at
least 1898. This engine was chain drive. Evidently more successful
than the spur gear. We do know that the chain is the most
economical transmission power. We know of some who operated these
engines. The only one we know of being in existence today is owned
by Elmer L. Ritzman, Enola, Pa., and editor of our ALBUM.
The ‘Rubicon’ four wheel drive traction engine built by
Wood, Tabor and Morse, of Eaton, N. Y. All the Wood, Tabor and
Morse pictures in this issue: are Mr. Wintermantel is a Flour
Broker and greatly interested in the steam field and makes many
contributions to our ALBUM.
We here give pictures of both engines. The pictures of the Wood,
Tabor and Morse are the courtesy of Mr. Vic Wintermantel, Flour
Broker, Box 4200, Bellevue, Pa., and the Lansing pictures are
courtesy of Mr. Ritzman.