The 101 Junior and 101 Super were introduced in 1939. The 101
Junior had a 124 cu. in. continental motor for gas. I believe that
for about $75 more a bigger continental motor (140 cu. in.) was
available. The 101 Super had a 201.3 cu. in. Chrysler motor Both
were available with standard front axle or row crop tricycle; front
P.T.O. and power lift on R.C. models were optional as were rubber
or steel wheels. The Junior was listed with individual brakes; the
Senior had 1 pedal only; air cleaners were behind the grill. The
Junior had a wire mesh grill with a removable door in the centre.
The Senior had one side of the grill removable (wire mesh behind
and chrome strips). The 101 was also listed with a kerosene motor
(lower compression, hot manifold 140 cu. in.) The 101 Senior tested
in Nebraska 1938. Both had 4 speeds forward, 1 reverse.
In 1939 and 40 the company used 31/8 bore
motors in 101 Senior models. 1941 and 42 were very similar but 6
cyl. 101 models used 3 bore motors. 1940 saw models 81 and 82
appear. They had 124 and 140 motors respectively, different
transmissions (4 forward speeds, 1 reverse); the differential was
on the rear axle (101 were ahead of rear axle); the 82 was a
kerosene model of 81 and had hot manifold lower compression,
rad-shutters, pressed sheet metal corss-wise grill-louvres. 1940
also saw the 201, 202, 203 models, all large 6 cylinder tractors
with very similar transmissions and final drive to the M-H 55. The
201 had a Chrysler 241.6 cu. in. engine. The 202 had a continental
M 292 engine. The 203 had a continental M 330 engine, the latter
two with 7 main bearings in the engine. They also had 4 forward
speeds. A 1942 catalogue shows 9 models: 203,102 Junior, 82, 102
Seniorall kerosene or gas models; 81, 101 Junior, 202, 101 Super,
201gasoline models-called high compression; the others had
‘regular’ compression, would burn gas or kerosene
(distillate). The 102 Senior gas had a continental F226 motor;
kerosene 102 Senior had a continental A244 motor. All 101s and 102s
used very similar (if not identical) transmissions
1942 saw M-H also offering the General tractor, a small 2-plow
tractor built by Cleveland Tractor Co. It had a Hercules engine.
The 1943 catalogue shows 203G, 102G Senior, 102G Junior all on
steel wheels, pressed steel grills with horizontal louvres (except
the 201 which had heavy cast iron grill with horizontal louvres);
also the 102 Sr. later had individual brakes. Since 1943 was war
time with various shortages, the tractors came on steel and with no
starters. They had Wico or F.M. magnetoes. Rubber tires were not
listed as available in 1943.
A 1944 catalogue shows rubber and steel both listed. However, a
catalogue listing didn’t mean availability without waiting.
Also a government-issued permit was needed when buying a tractor.
These tractors were sold till about 1947 when the 20, 30, 44, 55
series were introduced. The 1943 catalogue does not show 81 in the
line up. However, 81s were used by the RCAF for towing planes
around the airport. They are pictured on front of the 1943
catalogue with bumper, pintle hitch, and heavy cast front wheels
towing an airplane.
Quite a few replacement motors were sold as time went on,
usually a high compression engine replaced a regular compression
motor; an F 162 motor usually replaced an F140. (the 102G Junior
used an F 162 high compression motor). This F 162 motor was also
used in pumps, forklifts, air compressors etc. In my opinion they
did and still are doing a pretty good job. The Chrysler engines
were not as good in my opinion. They would not stand lugging so
well if run at throttle. They did much better when run with the
throttle wide open.
Twin power was a M-H feature. The normal motor speed was 1500
RPM. Twin power was when the speed was increased to 1800 RPM hence
more power was used for belt work. Raised notches on the throttle
quadrant are twin power notches.
A 1944 M-H catalogue shows the part M-H played in wartime;
shells, tanks, truck bodies, airplane wings and various parts were
made in large quantities in factories in the U.S. and Canada. Also
many farm machines, binders, mowers, plows, tractors, and combines
were sold to Great Britain to help the labor shortage and farm
every available acre to offset the serious food shortage in Britain
in wartime. A model M-H 101 Junior is pictured pulling a plow on a
large estate in England in the 1944 catalogue.
When 101 models were introduced in 1939, demonstrations were
carried out in many areas by dealers and company personnel, and
farmers (particularly prospective buyers) were invited to drive the
new models. At the end of the day those who drove them were given a
small button with the words ‘I have driven the M-H 101’.
These buttons are very rare today.
D. Mc Vittie, Box 508, Alliston, Ontario, Canada LOM 1AO, ivas a
Massey-Harris dealer from 1950-59 as his father had been from
1938-50. He has many old M-H catalogs, from which came this
information concerning the various M-H tractor models.
Mc Vittie has also sent us a list of serial numbers, which we
will be happy to reproduce and send to anyone interested. Please
send 201 and a self-addressed, stamped envelope. (He advises those
whose serial tag is missing that ‘it was below the battery on
the left side of the tractor just ahead of the transmission. The
number was stamped into the top of the pulley shift lever, M-H pony
McVittie would appreciate hearing from anyone who can add to his
A History of the Massey-Harris Company
Massey-Harris Co. Ltd. (now Massey Ferguson Ltd.), Toronto,
Ontario, first started selling gas engines in 1911 when they became
‘sole export agents’ for Olds engines. Several engines
survive with this brass tag on them. This arrangement lasted for
two years, and in 1913 Massey-Harris Co. bought out the Deyo/ Macey
Co. of Binghampton, New York. The M-H no. 1 engine, which looked
very similar to Deyo-Macey engines, was made in the Binghampton
factory from 1913 till 1916 when equipment was moved to the King
St., Toronto factory of M-H. In the early 1920’s, in order to
provide increased production capacity and production facilities for
tractor manufacture, M-H purchased a plant in Weston (a suburb of
Toronto). Production of the no. 1 was carried on there till 1922.
M-H built a tractor similar to the Parrott tractor. The no. 1 and
no. 2 M-H tractors had Buda motors and the no. 3 had Waukesha
In 1923 a new model was introduced called the no. 2 Kerosene
engine; production was again transferred back to King St. and
continued there till 1934 or 1935. In 1934 M-H sold the No. 3
engine listed in 1 3, 6 HP (but I believe it only sold in 3 HP
size.) This was a very well-designed model (with roller bearings on
crankshaft, push rod operated intake valve, diaphragm fuel pump,
balanced crankshaft, alloy removable sleeve of tough, long wearing
metal), but it was a little too late in time to sell well because
of lessening demand. Hydro was just coming in and P.T.O. would
drive sprayers and potato diggers, so the market had boiled down to
milking machines and remote farm pumps only requiring gas engine
In 1935 M-H sold the R models made by Cushman Engines of
Nebraska. They continued to sell these till about 1952; then for
several years they sold the Model S air-cooled engine made by
Clarke Engine Co. of Dufferin St., Toronto.
I have talked to several former employees regarding serial
numbers and production. Apparently serial numbers were updated each
year but no one knows the code. About 1929, approximately 55 men
were employed on the engine line and quite a few engines were
exported to Africa, Spain, France, Australia.
As M-H sold other equipment to many other countries for many
years, the writer would appreciate hearing from anyone who has
knowledge of engines being sold in other areas (such as the U.S.A.,
England, Asia, or Eastern Europe.)
It appears that M-H enjoyed only moderate sales of Olds and no.
1 engines, and only a little better than moderate sales on the no.
2. One man told me that the no. 1 was hard for green operators to
keep adjusted and so dealers had to educate the farmer that the no.
2 was better and had to talk down this ‘problem’. Another
man told me that the no. 1 would have been much better if it had
been throttle governed instead of hit and miss. He proceeded to
tell me that he knew of quite a few with broken con rods and blamed
it on the hit and miss. I believe that adverse tariff regulations
and currency ups and downs definitely caused low export sales.
Considering the fact that M-H was represented by a dealer in
every town and almost every village, not very many M-H engines
survive. The writer does not know of any 15 or 20 HP models. One 12
HP is at the W. D. Museum at Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. A 10 HP and
several smaller ones in each size are still in existence