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The Brown Hoisting Machinery Company - Brownhoist


Scope and Contents

Biographical Note

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

Machinery records

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The Brown Hoisting Machinery Company - Brownhoist, 1918 and n. d. | Historical Construction Equipment Association

By Thomas Berry

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Collection Overview

Title: The Brown Hoisting Machinery Company - Brownhoist, 1918 and n. d.Add to your cart.

ID: 1/101/1666

Primary Creator: Brown Hoisting Machinery Company, The - Brownhoist (1880-1931)

Extent: 2.0 Items

Arrangement: Group 1, Machinery Records, is arranged by record format and subseries.

Subjects: Alexander Ephraim Brown, Bay City, Michigan, Bridge crane, Brooklyn Polytechnical Institute, Brown Clutch, Brownhoist, Brown Hoisting, Chain fall, Chain hoist, Clamshell bucket, Cleveland, Ohio, Coast Range Lumber Company, Crawler crane, Eureka, California, Fayette Brown, Floor derrick, Hammond Lumber Company, Hand winch, Hoist, Hoisting crab, I-beam trolley, Industrial Brownhoist, Industrial Works, Lake Erie, Locomotive crane, Mabel, Oregon, Massillon, Ohio, Massillon Bridge Company, Overhead traveler, Sandusky, Ohio, Stiffleg derrick, Traction crane

Forms of Material: Brochure, Catalog, Sales literature

Languages: English

Scope and Contents of the Materials

This collection consists of sales literature discussing the company’s products.

Biographical Note

Alexander Ephraim Brown (14 May 1852-26 Apr. 1911) invented the Brown hoist which revolutionized the lake shipping industry. He was born in Cleveland, Ohio, the son of Fayette and Cornelia Curtis Brown. He graduated from CENTRAL HIGH SCHOOL and completed a course in civil engineering at Brooklyn Polytechnical Institute in 1872. While employed as chief engineer at the Massillon Bridge Company of Massillon, Ohio, in 1873-74 Brown devised a method of building bridge columns from scrap iron and steel.

Returning to Cleveland, he continued to work as a mechanical engineer but also experimented with ways to facilitate the unloading of bulk cargo on the Great Lakes by partially automating the process. Brown designed a cantilevered crane, rigged with wire rope to convey an automatic clamshell bucket to and from the ship's hold, removing the cargo. His hoist, first set up on the Lake Erie docks, reduced lake transportation costs and greatly shortened the turn-around time of the vessels.

He and his father, Fayette Brown, organized the Brown Hoisting & Conveying Machinery Company in Cleveland in 1880 with a capital of $100,000, incorporating it in 1893. Brown secured several hundred patents on his invention, which was distributed all over the world. The firm also produced other material-handling equipment for docks, railroads, and coal and steel plants.

By 1900, the firm had been renamed The Brown Hoisting Machinery Company. Its plant was largely destroyed by fire in December 1900. In 1931, it merged with Industrial Works (Collection 845) of Bay City, Michigan, to form The Industrial Brownhoist Company (Collection 841). American Hoist & Derrick acquired Industrial Brownhoist as a division in 1960.

There is no known relationship between this company and its products and the Giant Line Hoist produced by The Brown Clutch Company (Collection 1665) of Sandusky, Ohio.

Subject/Index Terms

Alexander Ephraim Brown
Bay City, Michigan
Bridge crane
Brooklyn Polytechnical Institute
Brown Clutch
Brown Hoisting
Chain fall
Chain hoist
Clamshell bucket
Cleveland, Ohio
Coast Range Lumber Company
Crawler crane
Eureka, California
Fayette Brown
Floor derrick
Hammond Lumber Company
Hand winch
Hoisting crab
I-beam trolley
Industrial Brownhoist
Industrial Works
Lake Erie
Locomotive crane
Mabel, Oregon
Massillon, Ohio
Massillon Bridge Company
Overhead traveler
Sandusky, Ohio
Stiffleg derrick
Traction crane

Administrative Information

Repository: Historical Construction Equipment Association

Access Restrictions: There are no restrictions on this collection.

Acquisition Method:

This is an artificial collection comprised of records from multiple accessions. Initial records in this collection were received from the Judd Griffith Collection, Accession 2000-0113. Additional records have been added from:

• Donald W. Frantz Collection, Accession 2005-0150 (received Dec 31, 2005). Filed with his collection per his request.

Box and Folder Listing

Browse by Group:

[Group 1: Machinery records, 1918 and n. d.],

Group 1: Machinery records, 1918 and n. d.Add to your cart.
Series 1: Sales literature, 1918 and n. d.Add to your cart.
Subseries 1: Judd Griffith Collection, 1918 and n. d.Add to your cart.
Item 1: Catalog D-1919, 1918Add to your cart.
Brown Hoisting – Brownhoist sales literature: Catalog discusses overhead traveler, I-beam trolley, chain fall, chain hoist, bridge crane, hoisting crab (hand winch) and floor derrick. Includes photographs of installations; photograph subjects include bridge cranes at Hammond Lumber Company, Eureka, California, and Coast Range Lumber Company, Mabel, Oregon. 60 pages, worn.
Item 2: Booklet 8-24, n. d.Add to your cart.
Brown Hoisting – Brownhoist sales literature: Brochure discusses clamshell bucket. Photograph shows use with crawler crane, traction crane, stiffleg derrick and locomotive crane. Eight pages, worn.

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