Truth or Fiction?

By Staff
article image

Route 4, Box 574 Keyser, West Virginia 26726

Pictured is my Atlantic Hill ‘Rover’. Most of the basic
parts were found in a briar patch near Keyser, West Virginia.
I’ve restored it the best I could with whatever parts were
available. It has a 5 HP engine, 4-speed Spicer transmission, belt,
chain, and gear drive, semi-automatic posi-traction, and
differential cruise control. Steering is accomplished by means of
old-type horse lines. With electric and candle lighting, the
‘Rover’ attains a top speed of 18 mph, and has seating for
two passengers and engineer. The ‘Rover’ weighs in at just
under 1950 lbs.

I have inquired and questioned everyone in this area about its
origin. One gentleman (who recently passed away at 101) said it was
called a Farm Jitney. I have found a nameplate to that effect
containing a serial number F.J. 12 stamped in brass on the

It seemed to be in this area shortly after the turn of the
century, was called a ‘Farm Jitney’ and was used for light
farm work such as hauling, pulling, hay shocks, pulling a wagon,
sleds, furrowing out ground, transporting personnel to and from
work area, and pulling a tool cart.

Also, I was advised they would jack up one wheel and use it to
grind sausage, churn butter and run a blower for cleaning grain.
This gentleman also told me a family bought it from an Italian
contractor who used it when roads were mostly done by hand and it
was used to transport the contractor from one end of the job to the
other. It was also used to pull what is called a sheep foot roller.
This machine is extremely powerful and will spin both wheels just
idling. The brakes are better than air. The steering is very good
except on rough terrain; it’s very possible it may have some
springs missing to assist this problem.

The Rover handles quite well on the road, is powerful, and has
good brakes. There appear to be a large number of McCormick Deering
parts on the vehicle.

Anyone having additional knowledge of this vehicle is welcome to
write Elwood D. Green, Rt. #4, Box 574, Keyser, West Virginia

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