Beaver Fever


| July/August 1997

  • 7 HP Beaver Model
    1957 Beaver standard model B (7 HP) with original Armstrong 'Smooth Tread' tires.
  • Engine After Defrosting
    5424-1 after defrosting. Engine was still free but heavily rusted. Some cooling fins had disappeared from rust along with sheet metal.
  • 1957 Beaver WT
    1957 Beaver WT: All Beavers were completely disassembled, blasted, primed and painted.
  • 1961 Beaver 750-E
    1961 Beaver 750-E. Weight, 665 pounds. List price $835.00, dealer price $626.25.
  • 1950, Tiller Steering'
    Serial #226, built late 1950, tiller steering. Rear lever was implement lift; front lever was forward/reverse.
  • Beaver deluxe model WT
    1957 Beaver deluxe model WT, with steering wheel. Three speeds forward and reverse, holding brake. Weight 595 pounds.
  • Tilting Fiberglas Hood
    Beaver 750 had many improved features, tilting Fiberglas hood, direct cable steering, parking brake, transmission lockout levers, rear fenders.
  • Beaver Mavhine
    Beaver demonstration 5424-1, still in service as my trusty snowplow. Tiller steering and heel-toe forward-reverse make this a very quick, agile machine. Orange paint is not a factory color. The other tractors are matched with factory paint.
  • Beaver Trans Axle

  • Beaver 750
    Beaver 750 was the last model designed by Baird. This tractor was produced by the new company, Beaver Industries, Inc.
  • Transmission Shift Levers
    5424-1: The first of three demonstrator models. The two black balls to the right are the transmission shift levers.

  • 7 HP Beaver Model
  • Engine After Defrosting
  • 1957 Beaver WT
  • 1961 Beaver 750-E
  • 1950, Tiller Steering'
  • Beaver deluxe model WT
  • Tilting Fiberglas Hood
  • Beaver Mavhine
  • Beaver Trans Axle
  • Beaver 750
  • Transmission Shift Levers

79 Elm Street, Ansonia, Connecticut 06401

As a young boy my friends and I would watch the freight trains go by from the hill above the tracks. Far below, on the opposite side of the tracks, was the Baird Machine Company. Being an inquisitive child I asked my parents what they made in that factory on the other side of town. 'Tractors,' they answered, along with 'What are you doing so far from home?' Needless to say it was a few years before I saw the Baird Factory again.

My next contact with U.S. Baird was in 1970, in my senior year at Stratford High School. I finally got to see the inside of the Baird Factory along with my industrial arts class. In awe of the overhead cranes and other large machinery, I completely forgot the tale of the tractors from years before. Un-known to me at the time, it had been ten years since the last tractor was made there. A few months later an offer of an apprenticeship followed. I declined and went off to a state technical college.

It would be more than two turbulent decades before Baird and I made contact again. After working at and watching the demise or decline of many factories, such as Bullard Company, Farrel Company, and Consolidated Diesel, it was the collapse of aerospace giant Avco-Ly coming that finally brought me back to U. S. Baird. It was in May of 1993 that I was employed at Baird.



Now being an inquisitive adult, I began to ask about the long history of this company. Founded in Connecticut in 1846, it has become one of the world's largest producers of high production metal forming machinery which includes multiple and four slide machines, multiple transfer presses, horizontal chucking machines and more. And also I was told we used to make tractors here. Bingo!!!

By now you must be wondering where the tractors fit in? It was at the company celebration of 150 years in business (1846-1996) that I displayed two Beaver tractors. Company President Charles Warner, whose great-grandfather, Charles Warner, bought the company from Mr. Baird in the late 1800s, related this story to me about how the Beaver was born.