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 NORTH MANCHESTER HISTORICAL SOCIETY
 North Manchester, Indiana

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WAGON MAKERS & THE

WHEELS OF HISTORY

By John Knarr
Revised and Expanded Version of Article First Published in the
Newsletter of the N. Manchester Historical Society, May 2010

 

We thank the Miller family for donating a wonderful collection of vintage agricultural equipment and artifacts to the North Manchester Center for History.  It is hoped that our visitors and future generations will gain a better appreciation, through exposure and education, of our rural past and local history. 

A Turnbull farm wagon is part of the Miller collection and indeed is a special addition to our museum. This large farm wagon is in straight-from-the-barn condition. This vintage wagon appears to be solid, retaining functional status. The large vintage wooden hubs and wooden axles are impressive upon close inspection. The oak hubs have a 8 ½” diameter. The hickory axles are 4 ½” thick at the widest point and are fitted into cast axle skeins that measure at least 3 ½” in diameter. Embossed on each skein are the initials “T.W.C.” [Turnbull Wagon Company] 

The double box wagon measures 10 feet 6 inches in length; 38 inches wide; and 28 inches deep (16" lower box, 12” upper box).  (This length of wagon bed was a standard size for many farm wagons. The bed on a Sears wagon as advertised in the 1902 Sears catalogue was also 10’6".) The Turnbull is considered to be a wide track wagon measuring 57" across, nearly five feet across from the middle of one wheel to the middle of the other one. The Turnbull high wheels on the rear measure 44" while the smaller front ones are 40" high. The felloe or wood rim is 2 ¾” wide and 2" deep. The felloes on the front wheel come in two sections; the rear wheel has three-section felloes. The rear wheels have 14 spokes while the front wheels contain 12 spokes. The tires are well ironed and the iron is still well centered; dimension of the iron rim is 3" width and 5/8" thick. The wagon comes with a lazy back spring seat, patent endgate, and drop tongue. The original Turnbull seat is in excellent condition. It still sports the paint and stripes of the Turnbull logo. Some repair was done to the undercarriage. The undercarriage was designed to accept a variety of beds with the box just sitting upon it. This particular wagon features a catalogued load capacity of approximately 5200 pounds.[1913 Turnbull Wagon Company Catalogue] 

The Turnbull wagon was a horse drawn farm vehicle. It is an authentic agricultural antique and represents an exceptional example of early rural American transportation.  Most of the Turnbull gear and body elements are original. The wood construction of this vehicle consists of  original manufactured pieces. Irons and cleats are original and intact. Farm work wagons were designed for heavy usage, and this wagon was obviously used. Significant wear is evident on the box and axles. Restorative paintwork is not present.

There are recognizable elements of original paint—green on the box and reddish-orange on the wheels. Traces of paint and signage are still visible. The lettering on the sideboards is nearly indiscernible in daylight or a lighted room. Under a “black light”, one can better make out the sideboard signage on both sides: “Sold by A.G. Lautzenhiser/No. Manchester IN”. He was the authorized dealer of Turnbull wagons in the North Manchester area during the period of 1900-1913.

  The 1913 Turnbull catalogue price for a wagon with the features associated with the Miller farm wagon without wheels was $115.00; shipping weight was 890 pounds. A set of 4 wheels cost $100.00; the four wheels weigh 650 pounds. Combined cost then was $225.00; total shipping weight, 1540 pounds.

 The Turnbull Wagon Company, Defiance, Ohio, was once Defiance’s largest employer, employing hundreds of wagon makers. Their farm wagons were claimed to be “BEST ON EARTH.” Such a wagon would have been shipped by railroad from the factory in Defiance, Ohio, to their network of dealers. Defiance historian Jim Rath informs us that a section of the railway spur into the Turnbull plant has been relocated to the pioneer Auglaize Village a few miles outside of Defiance.

Turnbull and Studebaker were competitors in the wagon industry. It is therefore interesting and instructive to compare their respective wagon catalogues.

 The 1913 Turnbull Wagon Catalogue affirms the merits of the Turnbull Skein and Boxing: large opening at mouth of Skein; thick walls of both Skein and Boxing; heavy Truss Rod Lug, insuring strength; heavy Collars to prevent breaking; “And we can assure you the bevel is positively correct.”  The skein was the metal thimble in which the end of the axle was inserted. Four-inch diameter skeins were the largest made by Turnbull.

 The Studebaker wagon catalogue for 1913 explains: “If a cast skein or skein box is too hard and brittle it will snap or break. If it is too soft it will wear through like chalk, it must be hard on the surface and pliant and cushion-like within, to give the longest wear.”  [p. 12] Moreover, “Skeins are fitted to the spindles of the axles with great care; the ends of the axles are coated with lead and oil to fill up the grain of the wood and to make a perfect cemented fit. The skeins are then forced onto the spindles with hydraulic pressure.”

 The Turnbull Catalogue illustrates the Sectional View of Hub, showing the way the Spokes are driven in the Turnbull Wheel. These Spokes are all set in Hot Glue, making “a union almost equal to an iron weld.” The Studebaker catalogue [p. 13]: “The life and wearing quality of the wheels depend largely upon the spokes which transmit the load from the hub to the rim or felloes, and being subjected to severe shocks, jars and strain, quality and correct construction are very essential. Experience has proven that the square shoulder spokes are easily broken at the hubs directly under the surface. …The slope shoulder spoke on the contrary spreads the load around the whole hub; it cushions the thrust and strain.” Studebaker certainly made the claim that their construction was superior, but it would appear that both Turnbull and Studebaker used a variation on the slope shoulder spoke concept.

 Some other regional wagon manufacturers a century ago included Birdsell Manufacturing Co.(South Bend, IN); Milburn Wagon Company (Toledo, OH); Troy Wagon Works Co. (Troy, OH); Peter Schuttler Wagon Co. (Chicago); G.P. Wagner of Jasper, IN; Bain Wagons of Kenosha, WI; Weber & Damme Wagons (St. Louis); John Deere Wagon Works (Moline, IL); Springfield Wagons (Springfield, MO); Sears, Roebuck; and Studebaker of South Bend, IN.

 Studebaker was a formidable competitor and industry leader in manufacturing processes, laboratory testing, sales, promotion, national and international distribution. The Studebaker company standardized models and made interchangeable parts. In its wagon catalogues, Studebaker emphasizes the careful selection and air-drying of wagon wood stock: “All dimension stock is left to air-dry from one to three years, according to the size and kind. The moisture dries slowly and steadily and welds the sap and cell walls together, making a solid, dry and strong piece of timber unlikely to check, split or break.”

  The 1897 Sears Roebuck Catalogue advertised a “Line of High Grade Farm Wagons” made at Abingdon, Illinois, “a concern whose enviable reputation for the manufacture of high class work is a guarantee for their quality.” The Sears Roebuck catalogue explained: “The wood material is air seasoned, bone dry. The iron and steel are of best quality. Wheels are well ironed and boiled in hot oil. Hubs are best oak and black birch. Spokes are strictly select. Felloes [rims] finest white oak. Axles select young hickory. Gear select white oak. Boxes are made of clear yellow poplar. Bottom boxes made of long leaf yellow pine. Paint is strictly pure and carefully applied by brush and positively no dipping of any kind.” By 1902 Sears was promoting the HIGHEST GRADE FARM WAGON BUILT; these wagons were shipped from the Hercules wagon factory in Evansville, IN. The Hercules plant was located on a parcel of land bordering the railroad with a direct line north to Chicago. The plant was less than a mile from the Ohio River which provided a steady supply of timber.

 The Turnbull Wagon Company of Defiance, Ohio, was also strategically located near railroads and rivers (Maumee and Auglaize). Turnbull trumpeted its own claim of BEST ON EARTH WAGONS in advertising and catalogues, and Turnbull placed a great deal of pride in their vehicles.  Turnbull advertised in Chautauqua’s printed programs. [Defiance Public Library file on Chautauqua] The large Turnbull factory complex was situated across the river from the Chautauqua grounds. Turnbull promoted itself through newspapers: “When you load up a wagon you want to know that it will hold it. The Turnbull is made only of the best materials and will stand a great overload. Every piece is guaranteed and should any defect appear, will be cheerfully and quickly replaced. When you buy a Turnbull you buy service—long uninterrupted satisfactory service.” [The Bryan Times, April 26, 1912]

 Some of my own earliest memories are of the times when my siblings, cousins and I would entertain ourselves during summer months on our grandparents’ Ohio farm by rolling large heavy wooden wheels that we found leaning against the side of the barn or granary. We even enjoyed a smooth-running set of two high wheels still attached to a wooden axle that had once been part of the larger wagon running gear. Such were the simple joys in growing up among the agricultural relics of our past. It is possible that those wheels with memories were manufactured by Turnbull. Vintage Turnbull wagons can today be viewed at the museums and pioneer villages of Sauder Village, Archbold, OH (four Turnbull wagons confirmed by curator Tracy Evans) and Auglaize Village outside of Defiance (at least two Turnbulls). You can also enjoy ice cream or a cup of coffee next to an authentic Turnbull wagon (above the entrance) in Defiance at Cabin Fever Coffee shop, 312 Clinton Street.

 The ubiquity of wagons in our history reflects the necessity to haul materials, goods, animals and persons from one point to another. In his Recollections, Thomas Riley Marshall recalls the time his father hitched a team of horses to a wagon and moved the family westward in 1856 from North Manchester to Rantoul, Illinois: “When I was two years of age my mother was threatened with tuberculosis and my father concluded to hook up a team of horses to what was then known as the democrat wagon, start west to the prairies of Illinois and try the open air treatment as a cure.” Our nation and our future Vice President, were then “on the move.”

 Blacksmiths and wheelwrights built the early wagons. The U.S. market for wagons expanded significantly in the 1800s. Large-scale production and factory complexes with dozens and even hundreds of employees eventually evolved in the production of carriages and wagons. The American Revolution, Civil War, other military conflicts, overall westward expansion of the country and the clearing of land for crops stimulated greater demand for wagons. The Conestoga wagon and other farm wagons were pulled by oxen or horses and were widely used even as early as the French and Indian War to transport weapons and supplies. The early Conestogas had five- or six-foot diameter wheels in the rear with 4-inch or wider iron rims.

 John C. Studebaker, a Dunkard, constructed a Conestoga wagon for his family’s journey from Pennsylvania to Ohio. The wagon’s curved shape was designed to prevent cargo from shifting. The high wheels lifted the wagon over stumps and streams. This Studebaker Conestoga is now on display at the National Studebaker Museum in South Bend. While the box is original to the wagon, the running gear (including wheels) was replaced in the late 1880s. Consequently the wheels now on the wagon are not truly representative of the earlier, higher Conestoga wheels.

 Smaller utilitarian farm wagons became popular. The Studebaker operations started in 1852 in South Bend when Henry and Clement Studebaker started a blacksmith shop. This shop became the Studebaker Manufacturing Co. in 1868, and the Studebaker firm would  eventually become the largest maker of wagons in the world. At the important Centennial Exposition held in Philadelphia in 1876, there were 30 different wagon manufacturers who displayed 78 wagons. Studebaker had the largest number of wagons shown at the Exposition., including a huge freight wagon said to have a carrying capacity of 14 tons. Also on display was a ‘Centennial’ labeled Studebaker farm wagon that won awards at the Philadelphia  Exposition. Fancy and expensive wagons that Studebaker exhibited at the 1876 Philadelphia and the 1893 Chicago Expositions are today featured at the Studebaker Museum.

 WAGON “OAQS”—Occasionally Asked Questions:

 How do you identify a wagon that has lost much of its paint? Close scrutiny of construction styles and individual parts can sometimes offer up important clues. The Turnbull name can sometimes be found stenciled on the back of the wagon seat, on the wooden axle or sideboard, or the “T.W.” initials might be found on the patented axle skein.

 How do you determine the age of a horse drawn vehicle? Without a documented history of ownership, it is often difficult to pinpoint the age of a farm wagon. Through heavy use and weathering, wagons lose paint and other identifying characteristics. Careful analysis and research using manufacturer catalogues can often reveal altered hardware, styles, paint colors, etc., over several years. The kind of axle (wooden or tubular steel) along with other gear and hardware will give clues. Moreover, when the dealer’s name appears on the wagon, the vehicle can be dated to those years that the wagon dealer was in business. Lautzenhiser was in business 1900-1915. “Sold by A.G. Lautzenhiser & Co./No. Manchester IN” was stenciled on the sideboards of the Turnbull wagon. The wagon, then, was sold to the Millers in the time frame 1900-1913.

 Why are the rear wheels larger than the front? The lesser mass of the front wheels facilitates turning, and the larger back wheels better support the load. Note the “rub irons” on the Turnbull wagon to protect the wagon box from being damaged by turning wheels. D.B. Turnbull patented his rub-iron on June 27, 1882 (No. 260, 138). Some wagons such as log and lumber vehicles used the same sized wheels on each axle.

 What is the axle skein? Attached to the hub boxing, it is the metal thimble in which the axle spindle fits. Its mouth (or opening) is of a specific diameter. Generally, the larger the diameter the more weight the wagon can carry. The axle skein serves as the surface on which the wheel hub rolls. D.B. Turnbull had his axle skein patented on June 27, 1882 (No. 260,139).

 Can you interchange wagon wheels between different wagons? One can interchange only if the hub boxing is same size as the skeins.

 What kind of nuts are used in the Turnbull wagon construction? Square nuts were popular and used on this wagon. Hex (six-sided) nuts were promoted in Wagon manufacturer catalogues by the 1870s but Turnbull used square nuts on the Miller wagon. On some of the fancier Studebaker wagons exhibited at the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition in 1876 and the 1893 Columbia Exposition in Chicago, hex nuts were used.

 Is the name on the sideboards that of the local manufacturer? Hardware and farm implement stores were among the early outlets for wagon makers. Lautzenhiser was the local agent or reseller, not the manufacturer.

 This Turnbull wagon does not have brakes…Is this normal? Vintage wagons came with or without brakes. It depended on region and use. If you used the wagons on hills and mountains you needed brakes. Footboards, brakes, spring seats and other items were “options” and not included with every wagon. The 1913 list price for the Turnbull spring seat was $6.00; box brake was $7.50.

 What are some differences between  earlier Conestoga wagons and this Turnbull farm wagon? The Studebaker family of Solingen, Germany, emigrated to America, and began building wagons in their blacksmith shops. Origins of the Conestoga wagon in the Conestoga Valley of Lancaster County, PA, are shrouded in the mists of time. The design and construction of the famous Conestoga wagon have a boat like box design with distinctive sloping lines and a bulging middle, no driver’s seat and stiff tongue.  The Conestoga bed sloped upwards from the middle to prevent the shifting of the cargo weight. The massively built, early four-wheeled Conestoga hauled freight over rough terrain, trails and rutted roads, being pulled by several teams of horses (or oxen). The high wheels enabled the Conestoga to be driven over small stumps and streams without damaging the wagon bed and its cargo. It was essential that the axles, wheel hubs and spokes be sturdily built. The wide iron-rimmed wheels helped in passing through streams and muddy areas.  The Conestoga used "clouts" rather than thimble skeins; i.e. metal strips on the top and bottom of the axle. Also, the Conestoga was noted for its canvas top supported by wooden hoops or bows secured through large staples on the sideboards. The fabric was frequently soaked in linseed oil for waterproofing.

 Is “Prairie Schooner” synonymous with “Conestoga”? The prairie schooner differed from the large freight carrying Conestogas. The lines of the bed were straight rather than curved; the bows supporting the cloth bonnet were upright rather than slanting fore and aft. The prairie schooner also had a seat where the driver or his family could ride.

 Like the prairie schooner, and unlike the Conestoga, the Turnbull farm wagon has straight utilitarian lines with a “boxy” look. It was designed to be pulled by one or two horses. Its farm wagon wheels, albeit large and heavy, are somewhat smaller than those on the earlier Conestoga. An optional “top” for Turnbull wagons was available and could be used by those who wanted to travel West to Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Iowa  or beyond. The Turnbull marketing motto combined “Strength” with “Lightness of Draft”; “Elegance of Finish” with “Durability”.

 The construction of wagons required the skills and craft of blacksmiths, turners, wheelwrights, woodworkers. Whereas the Conestoga was crafted mostly with hand tools, the manufacture of Turnbull wagons after 1876 benefited from newer, patented technologies and manufacturing equipment. With large-scale production of wagons and marketing approaches, catalogue descriptions and a network of designated dealers, the standardization and interchangeability of parts marked a new era in the development of technology, impacting  commerce, culture and daily life. The concentration of newer technologies, patents, money and marketing placed the smaller wagon makers at a distinct disadvantage. Large-scale wagon production was surely a prelude and precursor to Henry Ford’s assembly line.

 Why was the Turnbull Wagon Company located in Defiance, Ohio? Prior to locating in Defiance, Turnbull had made a fortune in carriage making in New Orleans but all was lost because of the Civil War. He then established wood working and wagon making businesses in South Bend, Goshen, Laporte (Indiana), and Napoleon (Ohio).  In 1876 David B. Turnbull, founder, selected twelve acres in Defiance, on the right bank of the Maumee river, just below the confluence of the Maumee with the Auglaize river. Turnbull utilized both rivers for a market in which to buy logs rafted down to his location and remaining in the water until sawn. An outstanding wagon timber source was important for this wagon manufacturer. By 1880 Turnbull was producing an average of about twenty wagons and one thousand agricultural wheels per day. Turnbull was the largest employer in Defiance and had annual sales of $500,000. The 1890 Defiance County history described the Turnbull Wagon Company as the “most extensive manufacturing interest in Defiance.” By 1890 Turnbull employed about 450 and was producing 2,000 wheels and 15 wagons daily. Turnbull had a close association with Defiance Machine Works, a manufacturer of wheelwright and mortising machinery, hub turning machines, rim and felloe bending machines and polishers. Both firms held several patents, and Turnbull’s success can largely be attributable to this mutual relationship. By 1906, the Turnbull factory was annually producing 10,000 farm wagons and 50,000 sets of wheels with rail shipment of their products nationwide, selling through an extensive dealer network.

 What happened to the Turnbull business? The March 1913 great flood in Defiance inundated the 24 factory buildings and nearly wiped out the manufacturing business; the Turnbull operation apparently had no flood insurance and suffered a severe financial setback. By 1919 wagon production had ceased in Defiance. Turnbull attempted a comeback by developing motorized vehicles. Between 1919 and 1925 the Defiance Motor Truck Co. was located at the old Turnbull plant at the end of Seneca Street in Defiance. In 1923 Turnbull built a passenger car but it was short-lived. None of the old buildings of the Turnbull complex are standing today. The Defiance Machine Works building is today located on the former Turnbull grounds, now adjacent to a city park along the river. Turnbull did not make the successful transition from horse-drawn vehicles to gasoline-powered cars and trucks. Of all the important manufacturers of wagons, Studebaker alone navigated a successful transition after 1900-1920. The last farm wagon produced by Studebaker was in 1920. In that year Studebaker sold its horse drawn vehicle business to the Kentucky Wagon Works Company of Louisville, Kentucky. Neither Studebaker nor Turnbull manufactured horse-drawn wagons after 1920. Both companies focused in the post-World War I era on the production of motorized vehicles, trucks and cars.

 In addition to the Turnbull wagon, the Lautzenhiser agricultural implement business name was stenciled on a corn sheller in the Miller farm collection.  A.G. Lautzenhiser & Co. located on the west side of Walnut Street had a Grand Opening on October 20, 1900 “With the Most Full and Complete Line of Implements, Carriages, Surries and Buggies Ever Shown in Northern Indiana.” Lautzenhiser’s lines included McCormick binders, mowers, hay rakes, and twine; also corn binders, huskers and shredders; Oliver Sulky and Walking Plows 404-405, Kraus Sulky cultivators; Tiger, Brown and Clipper riding cultivators; “The Brown” and “The Best” walking cultivators; Wolverine Disc Harrows; the original Reed spring tooth and Crescent spike tooth harrows; Turnbull  and Brown farm wagons; Butler steel wind mills; galvanized steel tanks, all sizes; tank heaters, the Haward cast heater and Butler galvanized heater; corn planters—Hamilton, Tiger, Haworth, Bull’s Eye; grain drills-Superior, disc and hoe; American clover bunchers and hay tedders manufactured by Ohio Rake Co.; truck scales; lawn swings; carriages, surries, buggies, harness, robes, blankets, whips, road wagons.  In Cox’s Farm Accounting (1913), A.G. Lautzenhiser & Co. advertised: “Phone 36. A.G. Lautzenhiser and B.H. Domer. Implements, Buggies, Harness, Automobiles and Accessories. We Sell the Leading Lines Manufactured: Oliver complete Line. McCormick’s Full Line. Turnbull Wagons. Heavy and Light Harness. A Complete Line of Buggies. Superior Drill. Auburn, Overland and Krit Automobiles. Accessories and Tires. Come In and See for Yourselves. Yours to Please.”

 W.E. Billings, publisher of The Weekly Rays of Light, effusively praised [Oct 18, 1900] A.G. Lautzenhiser and our town: “This week will witness the completion and dedication of one of the most handsome, well appointed and substantial business buildings in North Manchester, and that is saying a great deal, for no town in the country can boast of any better buildings than can this place.” Lautzenhiser’s background was outlined by Billings [for complete article, go to our web site]: “A.G. Lautzenhiser, from whom the firm takes its name, was born in Wabash county, and moved to North Manchester, October 22, 1874. He spent a few years in the west, and then returning worked at carpentering for a time. He was also employed as a day laborer and a rail splitter. After this he was employed on a salary by A.W. Bowman, and worked for him for three years. He then purchased an interest in the firm, and it was known as A.W. Bowman & Co., and for ten years did a successful business. At the end of this time he disposed of his interest and went on the road for the Rex Wind Mill company. He had two thousand dollars in this company, which went in the loss account. After that he identified himself with the McCormick harvesting machine company as manager for five counties in Indiana, which position he still holds at a very lucrative salary. He has won an enviable reputation as being a hustler and a pusher, honest at all times and attentive to business. He is a pleasant man to meet, and during his active business life here of over twenty years he has contributed much to the welfare of the town.”

 Besides Lautzenhiser, other early farm equipment dealers in North Manchester included:  A.W. Bowman, A.B. Miller, J.H. Butterbaugh, Riverview Agricultural Implements (A.C. Mills).  Amos W. Bowman had married Emma Studebaker, the eldest daughter of Henry Studebaker, one of the founders of the Studebaker Wagon factory in South Bend. Clarence Bowman, their son, had a good position working for the Studebaker Wagon Works in South Bend. [N. Manchester Journal, May 2, 1901] The Bowmans were members of the German Baptist/Brethren Church, as was A.G. Lautzenhiser, and active in the affairs of the WCTU. [The Studebaker Family in America 1736-1976, Vol. 1, p. 418.] John Clement Studebaker had married Rebecca Mohler  in 1820. Five sons were involved in the Studebaker business: Henry, Clement, John Mohler, Peter and Jacob. In 1858 Henry sold his share of the firm to younger brother J.M. Like his parents Henry was a member of the Dunkards having pacifist beliefs. He abstained from tobacco and liquor, and probably had mixed feelings about the governmental and military contracts entered into by the family firm. Although the family was raised as Dunkards (German Baptist), Henry’s brothers as adults joined other denominations: Clement (Methodist); J.M. (Presbyterian); Peter (Methodist); Jacob (Baptist). 

 EARLY WAGON MAKERS IN NO. MANCHESTER AREA

 The following list of Wagon Makers in North Manchester was compiled from various directories. Note that in 1890, there were at least four local wagon manufacturers! Also, the Wabash County Directory for 1894 listed four Wagon Makers in North Manchester and one in Liberty Mills. Several other occupations and businesses of course were associated with the wagon industry: blacksmithing, saw mills and lumber, wood workers, buggy and harness makers, hardware and implement dealers.

John Frost, Carriage and Wagon Maker [listed in Indiana State Gazetteer, 1860-1861; 1864-1865]

D.C. West, Carriage and Wagon Maker [Indiana State Gazetteer, 1864-1865]

D. Fannin, Wagon Maker [Swartz, Tedrowe & Tilford’s Indiana State Directory, 1875-1876]

David Fanning, Wagon Maker [Indiana State Gazetteer, 1890; 1892; 1895-1896]

J. & S. Horn, Carriage and Wagon Manufacturer, corner Main and Cincinnati, Wabash & Michigan RR [Swartz, Tedrowe & Tilford’s 1875-1876]

Smith Horn, Wagon Manufacturer [Indiana State Gazetteer, 1880-1881; 1882-1883; 1884-1885]

David J. Rupley, Blacksmith, Carriage and Wagon Maker, South Manchester [Indiana State Gazetteer, 1882-1883; Wabash County Directory, 1894]

Wm. Stadler, Carriage and Wagon Manufacturer, corner Mill and Main [Indiana State Gazetteer, 1884-1885; 1890; 1895-1896; Wabash County Directory, 1894]

Henry Thrush & Son, Wagon Maker, corner Main & Big Four RR [Indiana State Gazetteer, 1890; 1892; Wabash County Directory, 1894]]

Young & Shoop, Wagon Makers [Indiana State Gazetteer, 1890; 1892]

Enyart & Son, Wagon Maker, corner Mill and Main [Wabash County Directory, 1894]

Michael Cook, Wagon Maker, Liberty Mills [Wabash Co. Directory, 1894]

 In addition to the aforementioned persons classified as wagon makers, there were those whose businesses supplied the wagon wood, parts, materials and supplies. One such person was J.A. Browne who had a saw mill and large lumber business. In 1893 it was reported that “J.A. Browne is at home from Neelerville, Mo., where he bought several car loads of wagon felloes. A.H. Williams and John Smith who went down to take care of the stock, are still there.” [N. Manchester Journal, Mar 30, 1893]

 


The author wishes to acknowledge the assistance of several persons who helped with this wagon research, including Bea Knarr, Paul Shrider, Joyce Joy, Nancy Reed, Allan White, Leon Jones, Jim Rath, Andy-archivist at Studebaker National Museum, Tracie Evans-curator of Sauder Village Museum, and the librarians at Defiance Public Library. The Indiana State Gazetteer and other Indiana business directories are in the Indiana State Library, Indianapolis.