Pre-30's Gas


Around 1892 John Froelich invented the first gasoline powered tractor, he was frustrated with how heavy, bulky, and hard to maneuver the steam engines were. He believed he had a better way to power an engine, gasoline. Alongside his blacksmith they developed a vertical one-cylinder engine. In 1894 Froelich and other investors came together to form the Waterloo Gasoline Traction Engine Company. They did not have much success in the early years and Froelich left the company in 1895. In 1914 Waterloo came out with the Waterloo Boy Model “R” single-speed tractor, it sold well. Hart-Parr eventually followed suit and introduced the first tractor that used a 2-cylinder engine in 1903. Gasoline-powered tractors continued to take off in the agricultural industry and soon farmers were free from using oxen, horses, and manpower to maintain their farms.

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