The Oldest Known 2 HP Sparta Economy Model A Engine

| November/December 1997

Watertown, Wisconsin

This is the story of a 2 HP Sparta Economy engine #664- I found it at an old saw mill near Black River Falls, nearly 20 years ago.

After reading Glenn Karch's book 'Sparta Economy Gasoline Engines,' and looking over the serial number list, I discovered my engine is the oldest known surviving 2 HP Sparta Economy engine.

The Holm's Machine Manufacturing Company of Sparta, Michigan, manufactured Sparta Economy engines for Sears, Roebuck and Company. Production of Model A Sparta Economy engines began in 1909. Altogether Holm's produced about 1200 Model A Sparta Economy engines. The Sears catalog of 1910 lists the price of a 2 HP Economy engine at $46.95.

Once I knew that my engine was the oldest known 2 HP Sparta Economy, I began making arrangements for its restoration. Like most restorations, the re building of the engine was no small task. Through a lot of hard work and some fortunate circumstances, this engine was beautifully restored to working condition.

Without the help of fellow collector Paul Hartman of Smyrna, Tennessee, the restoration of my engine would not have been possible. I knew that Paul owned a similar 2 HP Sparta Economy. Several parts were missing from my engine, including the entire fuel mixing mechanism, gas filler, and generator pipe. I called him and asked if he could send me drawings of these parts so I could have replacements made. Imagine my surprise when two weeks later the newly manufactured parts them selves arrived at my door! Needless to say, I was happy to get them. With these expertly crafted replacement parts in hand, the restoration began.