3228 180th Street Fort Madison, Iowa 52627-9767
This International Harvester Mogul Engine is a side shaft portable, 15 HP, serial number JB-583 and the following is what is known of its origin.
This engine was bought by the late Harry Stein, my dad, in 1928 from Hade Ford Motor Company, Fort Madison, Iowa. It had been traded in the purchase of a new Fordson tractor and was not in running condition when Dad bought it. According to information supplied by my older brother Bernard, Dad enlisted the aid of a neighbor, Al Best, to help him move the engine home. They had to pull what we always called Prison Hill, up US Highway 61, which at that time was considered a mile long. This hill being what it was, with an. engine this size and heavy, I believe would have done one team in, if they were not a pair of good heavyweights. There was always a small clevis in the end of the engine tongue and this makes me think they used a four horse tandem hitch to 'pull the hill.'
Dad got the engine to run and got a feed mill that, at one time, was used in the Saar Mill in Fort Madison, Iowa, to grind stock feed. This feed mill was a Kelly Duplex and one of the few manufactured with a cast iron hopper. This engine also saw service on the silo blower and fodder shredder.
About 1933 the oil slinger on the crankshaft stopped up and the babbitt was melted out of the connecting rod bearing. An old thresherman neighbor, Waldo Gregg, helped Dad rebabbitt the rod bearing, so while the engine was down Dad also decided to replace the engine valves and piston rings. A glance at the serial plate reads 12 HP, so he ordered 12 HP parts. When they came, he found they were not big enough, and he had a trip back to the dealership to reorder.
At the dealership he was told International Harvester had the engine built and people thought they were too big so they would not buy them. It appears there was a decision to sell them as 12 HP engines.
Just before the beginning of WWII, Dad bought a John Deere model D tractor and, a little later, a Let: feed mill, so the old engine was pulled to the side for the next 45 years. Nearing retirement from the Santa Fe Railroad, I took an interest in the old engine again, and in the process got badly infected with Engin it is. This is a serious affliction one that leads to the desire to have more!
I moved the engine to Streator, Illinois, late summer of 1987, where I would tinker with it a while, let it sit a while and back to tinkering again. So far I have replaced all but one piece of wood and reconstructed the exhaust system. The bottoms of the fuel and water tanks were rusted, so it was necessary to patch them believe it or not, they are the originals!
One day I decided to photograph the serial plate so I wanted to brighten it up a bit and made a startling discovery. Around the horsepower rating there were the circular marks of a big punch. The next thing I noticed, the one and two were cut deeper in the plate. Then 1 got my bifocals into fine focus and found a '15' showing out from under the 12! This alteration was found 60 years after Dad bought this engine secondhand. I have since received a list of early serial numbers and year of manufacture of International Harvester Company engines and tractors and believe the alteration was done at the company.
Curt Younkin is the fellow who traded this engine on the purchase of a Fordson tractor. The Younkin farm is located just northwest of Montrose, Iowa. My grandmother's brother, Ferddy Barnard, worked as a hired hand for Curt Younkin, and I guess through him, maybe my dad gained information that influenced him to buy the engine.
Somewhere in its earlier days this heavy engine went through a bridge and the scars are still there. There is a terrible wobble to the left rear wheel after reconstruction, repair work to the right rear wheel and exhaust valve rocker, plus a break in the base. As a small youngster I barely remember some of the small plank bridges over drainage ditches and creeks in the neighborhoods where Ferddy Barnard lived. I think of it in this way: the bridge would hold a team and a wagon load of hay, but not this Mogul engine.
September 12,1991 was a very important day. This is the day the engine returned to life again and ran on its own after being idle 48 years more or less.
This is quite a bit laterhave communicated with Curt Younkin's son, Bob, and he tells me the line shaft is still in the building where they belted the Mogul to the line shaft to power a corn sheller and feed mill. He says he still remembers the big flywheels. Beyond that he says they do not have any information on the Mogul. Also, he mentioned they used the Fordson tractor until about 1936.
Information about the engine appeared on a placard posted at antique machinery shows when it was owned and shown by Earl Thiebaud, Black Forest, Colorado. I am also the new proud owner of Mogul Engine, serial JB-501.I picked this engine up September 20, 1996, and on the way home put it on display at the Iowa Farm Progress Show in Amana, Iowa, in the International Harvester Collectors, Iowa Chapter 5 exhibit.
'This engine was selected as the logo for the 1987 Front Range Antique Power Association (F.R.A.P.A.) buttons, quite an honor. Serial No. JB-501 was the first 15 HP model engine off the factory floor. There were only 118 of these engines built during the years of 1914 to 1918. It was bought by Adolph Mulvay who had a ranch and farm near Westcliffe, Colorado. He used it to run a grain separator and a cordwood saw. I bought it in 1976 from his daughter, Gertrude Schwarz, who with her husband Harold lives near Canon City, Colorado. The engine at that time had not run since 1943. It is still 100% original.
'This engine has several unusual features not found on most 'one lungers'. It is a side shaft engine, so called because of the revolving shaft coming forward from the main bearing. This shaft runs the fuel pump, oil lubricator, governor, inlet and exhaust valves, magneto and ignitor. Most one lungers use a push rod to do these things. The engine has no spark plug. Ignition of the fuel mixture is brought about by the tripping action of the ignitor. Water in the engine is cooled by running it over the screen on top. A screen cooled, ignitor fired, side shaft engine is indeed a rare engine.'