1904 8 HP International

A world-class engine

1904ihc1

Tommy Turner's 1904 8 HP International Harvester at Portland, Ind., in 2008.

Christian Williams

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Manufacturer: International Harvester Co., Chicago, Ill.
Year: 1904
Horsepower: 8
Serial number: 133

This is the oldest known International Harvester Co. engine and possibly the company’s 33rd engine constructed.

It is not known if IHC began building this model with serial no. 100 or a different number (110, 120, etc.).

In early summer of 1904, IHC began building this style engine, which was the forerunner to the IHC horizontal and Famous line of engines. While records are unclear, it is believed the 8 HP model was the only engine constructed of the 1904 vintage, with unique features that were unlike any of the other IHC engines built.

Features distinguishing this model from other IHC and Famous models include a machined head, forked pushrod (with igniter trip located in the fork), curved flanges on the carburetor and exhaust to accommodate the machined head, and gearing located outside the crankcase, as well as a base that more closely resembles the Fairbanks-Morse Type N engines than other IHC models.

This engine was in its original location for nearly 90 years. The skidding under the engine, when purchased from the original setting, may have been the original shipping skids. They did, however, meet with a chainsaw and ax through the years to make more room around the engine.

In terms of dimensions, this engine is a close match to that of the 12 HP Famous line built by IHC.