The Stinson Tractor Company

| September/October 1991

706 S. Illinois St., Conrad, Montana 59425

One of the most successful farm tractors of its time was the Stinson. It was first built in Minneapolis in 1917-The factory was located at Central Avenue and 16th Street.

Two of the seven Stinson brothers quit their jobs at the Advance steam engine factory, in southern Michigan, and started their own factory for a very modern tractor of their own design. They purchased the Beaver 36 HP motor, and made all the rest of it in their Minneapolis factory. The brothers were Boyd and Fred, and they kept the floor of their factory clean enough to eat on. All workers wore white coveralls, and if soiled, they changed into clean ones immediately.

The tractor produced in 1917 was the 18-36, and things were going very well until the factory ran out of materials because of the war. They were out of production in 1919, and lost their lease on the fine big factory building.

They relocated to Superior, Wisconsin in 1920, but ran into hard times and slow sales. The total count of tractor manufacturers at that time was 142. In small town America there was room for only about four to ten dealerships in each town and they were overstocked, and the Stinsons went bankrupt.

Central Ave. and 16th. One of the Largest Gas Traction Engine Factories in the West