Silas W. Taber patent 719,531, Houlton, 1902

Contributed by Aroostook County Historical and Art Museum


Silas W. Taber patented his design for an improved wagon-gear for drop-axle wagons in 1903.

A drop-axle wagon has "U" shaped front and rear axles with the wagon bed below the height of the wheel hubs.

The advantage of the drop-axle wagon is that it produces a lower center of gravity giving the wagon more stability and making it easier for horses to pull. The low wagon bed also makes it easier to load barrels of potatoes or other heavy freight.

Other drop-axle wagon designs include the jigger wagon, invented in Bangor in the 1850s, and the sloven, thought to have been invented in St. John, New Brunswick and used throughout the Maritime Provinces in Canada.

Taber's patent improved on the design of the drop-axle wagon-gear by strengthening the axle with a truss-bar that increased the axle's resistance to canting and improving the attachment of the wheel-gear to the wagon bed with a link-brace.

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About This Item

  • Title: Silas W. Taber patent 719,531, Houlton, 1902
  • Creator: Taber, Silas W.
  • Creation Date: circa 1902
  • Subject Date: circa 1902
  • Town: Houlton
  • County: Aroostook
  • State: ME
  • Media: Drawing
  • Dimensions: 28 cm x 21 cm
  • Object Type: Image

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For more information about this item, contact:

Aroostook County Historical and Art Museum
109 Main Street, Houlton, ME 04730

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