Click here for an interesting comparison, then and now!
Tractors of this type were used to haul freight as shown in this
photo from 'Railroad Magazine':
(click on photo for a larger image)
A portion of the caption reads: "Alex Isgreen was the engineer, Jerome Connelly the fireman, and Walter Saunders did the braking. Mrs. Saunders and Belle Hutchinson kept a sharp lookout for Gila Monsters"
They were also used in agriculture as shown in this view from a
The Best Tractor at Ardenwood is used for public education and is
used to haul happy passengers:
A permanent home for the tractor at Ardenwood is in the planning
stages. In the meantime the tractor must be partially assembled
and dis-assembled each time it is used since the building it is stored
in has limited door height... This leads to some interesting
Here's a composite of the assembly process:
You might wonder why the tractor is so tall. In fact, you may
have seen tractors like this Case Steam Tractor:
The difference is that the Best Tractor has a vertical boiler whereas most other
steam tractors have horizontal
boilers. The vertical boiler enables the tractor to safely
negotiate rough terrain and steep slopes.
Click on the following image to see a larger view with parts of the