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Manufacturers Index - Stover Manufacturing Co.

Stover Manufacturing Co.
Freeport, IL, U.S.A.
Manufacturer Class: Wood Working Machinery & Steam and Gas Engines

Last Modified: Sep 11 2012 9:23PM by joelr4
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Beginning in the 1860s with a windmill and then a corn cultivator, Daniel C. Stover invented and manufactured machinery of various kinds under the name Stover Experimental Works. In 1879 or 1881 he incorporated as Stover Manufacturing Co. There was also the Stover Engine Works and the Stover Bicycle Co. D. C. Stover died in 1908. In 1916 the Stover companies amalgamated to form Stover Manufacturing & Engine Co.

Another related company was Stover Novelty Works, which was also owned by Daniel C. Stover. The Novelty Works, which specialized in small drill presses, was puchased in 1896 by employee August G. Hoefer and renamed Hoefer Manufacturing Co.

Stover Manufacturing Co. had a diversified product line that leaned towards farm-related products, such as windmills, drag saws, portable sawmills, water tanks, feed grinders, etc. They became a supplier to Sears, Roebuck & Co., most notably of gasoline engines and windmills.

Under the banner of Stover Manufacturing & Engine Co. the business continued until it shut down in 1942.

Information Sources

  • C. H. Wendel's Stover Manufacturing and Engine Company (Power in the Past, Vol 3) has information on this company, including the fact that the Stover companies merged in 1916.
  • A web page on Australian windmill makers notes that Stover imported windmills to Australia beginning in 1881/82. Another page on the same site says, "[Stover Manufacturing & Engine Co.] was formed in 1881, in Freeport, Illinois, USA, although its principal Daniel C. STOVER had been manufacturing and inventing various machinery from the 1860's. Windmills were not added to the companyproduction list until 1883. Daniel STOVER together with his brother, had patented a windmill in 1872, but sold the manufacturing rights. "
  • The University of New Mexico Library has an 1889 catalog in its holdings. "Illustrated and Descriptive Catalogue of the Ideal Wind Mill, published by the Freeport, Illinois-based Stover Manufacturing Co. Includes product information and instructions for constructing wind mill towers. Also offers illustrations and information on related tools and products, including water pumps, drive heads and points, pipe fittings and cutters, stock tanks, and rotary feed grinders."
  • From a listing on Old-Paper.com, for a ca. 1929 catalog from this firm. The catalog lists "Stover saw frames, 4 illustrations w/specifications-cord wood saw frame, extension pole saw frame, saw mandrel & stover pole saw frame with fly wheel below."
  • The Sears/Craftsman manufacturer prefix list gives 417 as the code for Stover Engine Works.
  • A search for patent from 1920 onwards uncovered 16 patents assigned to Stover Manufacturing & Engine Co., spanning 1923 to 1943. The patents are for coal chutes, hinges, pulleys, windmills, mixers, poker and clinker tongs, mops, and cylinder sleeves. None of the patents are for woodworking machinery.
  • From the Seventh Annual Cooperative Tractor Catalog, 1922, this firm is listed as a maker of "wood sawing machines".
  • A web page on Samson windmills, made by Stover, provides the information that Stover ceased doing business in 1942. This is corroborated by the patent records (the patent issued in 1943 was applied for in 1938).