The Brown Marvel

By Staff
1 / 3
Baxter Wallace of Rt. 1, Box 151, Cumberland City, Tennessee 37050 is the owner of this Brown Marvel built by Ballou Mfg. Company in Belding, Michigan.
2 / 3
3 / 3

Rt 1, Box 151 Cumberland City, Tennessee 37050

Some thirty odd years ago, in the small middle Tennessee town
where I live, an old gentleman ran a grist mill. He pulled the mill
with a 10 HP, hopper-cooled Fairbanks Morse. About four or five
years ago I thought I  would try to find his engine. After
asking a lot of questions, I found out it was broken up for scrap
iron, but while I was in the process of trying to find the 10 HP
Fairbanks, I found an upright, air-cooled engine named The Brown
Marvel, built by Ballou Mfg. Company in Belding, Michigan.

The engine was in an old shed across the street from the school
I attended as a boy. It was frozen and stuck up as it had been
sitting in the shed for some fifty-six years. I was told by a
friend that it came out of an iron ore mine. We think it pulled a
water pump used to wash the iron ore. The mine closed down in 1927
and the engine was put in the shed a couple of years later.

After a few nights of work we managed to get the engine apart.
When we started putting it back together, we realized that the
governor weight was missing. For three years we carried the engine
to shows in five different states and never found anyone who had
ever heard of The Brown Marvel. We then put a picture in the GEM
asking for information. I received a letter from Mr. Anchor Hanson
in Melda, Montana, saying he had restored a Brown Marvel, but sold
it to Mr. Clyde Sherman, in Washingon State. Mr. Hanson said after
about three or four years of searching he only found one more Brown
Marvel in up-state New York. We know of only three of these engines
at this time.

Mr. Sherman took the governor weight from his engine, and had
one made for me at a local foundry. With the help of a couple of
friends, I now have my engine in good running condition. Thanks to
GEM for helping in getting the information I so desperately

Gas Engine Magazine
Gas Engine Magazine
Preserving the History of Internal Combustion Engines