Welcome to Kevin's Old Iron!

I re-discovered this 1912 Rockford 1-1/2 hp hit & miss engine in my grandfather's wood shed. I remember playing around it as a child, but I had almost forgotten about it until I stumbled across it again a few years ago.

My grandfather purchased the engine from a neighbor's brother who lived in nearby Smithville, TN during the early 1930s.

My grandfather used it to grind corn for the family farm, as well as for powering a small generator used to charge batteries. Keeping batteries charged was very important during the days when the entire family gathered around the fireplace to hear Minnie Pearl on the Grand Ole Opry on Saturday night.

The Rockford was used until the early 1950s, and then placed in the barn. My grandfather kept it oiled good, but didn't run it any as the coil was bad.


Charlie F. Bailiff
The Rockford 1 1/2 HP engine, when new, had an ignitor and low tension coil. However, as you can see in the pictures, the engine has been adapted to accept a spark plug and use a buzz coil. Emerson-Brantingham purchased the Rockford Engine Works in September 1912 and reproduced the Rockford engine exactly under the EB tag during 1913 & 1914 before manufacturing a smaller version of their own. So, I'm told a reproduction of the EB ignitor will fit perfectly.
The color for this Rockford engine was red. The larger side-shafts were a wine color. While the 3 hp hopper-cooled were dark green. I suspect that the reason for this engine being red is that it was sold after the buyout by Emerson-Brantingham. EB's color is red.

My grandfather, Charlie F. Bailiff, was elated when the engine ran for the first time in 49 or so years on Saturday, February 19, 2000. He passed away on July 1, 2001 at age 89.


Rockford 1 1/2 hp model
"American Gasoline Engines since 1872"
by C.H. Wendel

The above pictures were taken by Steve Barr at the Blue Mound, IL auction on May 5, 2001. The Emerson-Brantingham 1 1/2hp engine was purchased by Rob Timms. Looks just like the Rockfords, huh?

The Emerson-Brantingham on the left was owned by Chris Burns when the photo was taken in 1976. This pic was taken by Ted Brookover and is borrowed from his webpages.

Click here for more Rockford/EB pics!