Alvordton, Ohio 43501
I have photostatic copies of three large Port Huron steam
traction engines that were copied from the original construction
records. The company called them a 38 hp.
Some men that worked around them called them a double 19 hp.,
and test house results showed they developed 110 hp. and perhaps
could do more than this, so they could be rated as a 38-110 hp.
engine. All three engines were steel geared for heavy traction
work, and all had the 32-100 hp. boiler with 54 two inch tubes nine
feet long instead of the usual seven foot tubes. That made them a
All had 4′ crankshafts, crankpins and countershafts. Engine
No. 5897 went to the test house at 6:30 A.M. on Sept. 20, 1910, and
delivered to the painters at 5:00 P.M. the next day.
This engine was sold to John Western of Detroit, Mich., and
shipped to him on Sept. 29, 1910. Records do not tell why this
engine was not sold for about three years after it was built.
38 hp. engine No. 5970, after building, and testing was sent to
the painters on October 16, 1907, and the test house foreman was H.
Schnackenberg. This engine was equipped with a locomotive cab,
canopy top, and jacketed boiler. This engine was sold to Seeber
Bros of Champaign, Illinois, and shipped October 26, 1907.
38 hp. engine No. 6121 was built and stored in a shed at the
plant at 3:00 P.M. on April 16, 1908, and was equipped with a
locomotive cab, & Geo. Conner power steering device. Mr. Conner
was the inventor of the Port Huron self-cleaning, non-jarring drive
wheel in use from 1900 on.
Test house records show the Woolf slide valve cut off steam at
70% of the stroke in both motions with reverse lever in corner
notch of quadrant. Exhaust release was 90% of stroke with one-eight
inch lead, and one-fourth inch piston head clearence. All boilers
carried 175 lbs. working pressure, and J. Lorig was the test house
This engine was sold to the Burnham Land and Lumber Co. of
Burnham, Missouri, and shipped Sept., 22, 1909.
All of these 38 hp. double tandem Woolf compound engines had a
high-pressure cylinder 6′ in Diam., and low pressure cylinder
9′ diameter with a 10′ stroke. The high pressure cylinder
-No. 856E was the same as used on the 16 hp. Port Huron Woolf
compounds. The enclosed photo, copied from the 1910 Port Huron
catalogue is the only literature I have ever seen of this size
engine. It shows a 38 hp. engine pulling two heavy wagon loads of
lumber. The wagons were equipped with heavy wide tired wooden
wheels with tandem axles, front and rear. The picture also shows
the engine equipped with a 160 gallon front water tank. No doubt
this photo shows engine No. 5897.