A Briggs & Stratton Was Mine at Seven Years of Age

| October/November 1992

  • John Brown's son and engines

  • John Brown's son and engines

550 Carnegie Avenue, Peterborough, Ontario K9L 1N2

My father and my uncle acquired quite a collection of gas engines and tractors, from private deals, auction sales, etc. One day they brought home an old washing machine powered by an old kick-start Briggs and Stratton gas engine type WMB. When I was about seven years old, my father gave me the engine. I hooked it up to different things like old water pumps, old time milking machines, and also an old furnace blower. I had a lot of fun with it, but I finally outgrew it, so I set it up on the shelf in my father's garage.

When I was about seventeen, my brother and I were at an auction sale out at an old go-cart track that went out of business. One of the items up for sale was an old butter box with a couple of WMB engines, the same as my father had given me, except they were all in pieces. We bought the box of parts for about $10.00. I didn't do much with them when I got them home except think of what I just wasted $10.00 on, so I packed the box of parts away in my father's basement in an old cupboard.

Three or four years later I was married, had my own house and my own basement, and wanted something to tinker with in my spare time. I remembered the box of parts at my father's place. I took the parts down to my home, examined everything, and found I wasn't missing a whole lot of parts except very minor ones. I had enough for two complete engines. Well, to make a long story short, I am now thirty years old, and have all the engines finished and restored as original.

I am hoping my son (shown above with me and my engines) will be inspired the same way I was.