Shire Album 413: Steam Wagons by Derek Rayner
Model Number: 9780747805519
Steam wagons – steam engines that carry goods on the roads – developed considerably later than traction engines and steam rollers, which started to appear in the mid 1860s. With certain exceptions, the abolition in 1896 of the notorious ‘Red Flag’ Act opened the way for the development of light steam-powered vehicles, initially in the form of vans, that could carry a small load. The popularity of these led to the introduction of steam-powered platform trucks before 1900 and in the next decade there were scored of manufacturers trying to establish a foothold in the growing market.
This books tells the story of steam wagons from the earliest designs through to the last models. It explains how they worked and what they did. An informative text is combined with a selection of photographs to illustrate steam wagons both at work in their heyday in the early twentieth century and in action more recently in the period in which they have become valued historical artefacts. Although steam wagons used not to be thought of as belonging to the traction engine world, times have changed and they now appear alongside traction engines at events all over Great Britain and in other countries. They have their particular devotees and keen steam wagon drivers sometimes look down and certainly back on drivers of other, rather slower, steam road vehicles.