In March 1923, Oland J. Brooks established Brooks Steam Motors, Ltd. in Stratford, Ontario,Canada. Some sources believe it was a successor to the Trask Detroit Steam car.
The Brooks Steam Car was second in
popularity to the Stanley in the Americas of the 1920s, more than 300 units
being delivered in the car's relatively short existence. Many of these were taxi cabs.
The Brooks borrowed heavily from the Stanley and its bodies were all built with
In 1926, Brooks purchased a factory in Buffalo, NY to avoid the deteriorating financial situation in Canada. He created the Brooks Steam Motors, Inc., which he incorporated in Delaware.
By 1927 the company was in receivership and Brooks was back in Buffalo, NY. The last of the Brooks cars were auctioned in 1929 and the Stratford factory finally sold in 1931.
Brooks turned to steam buses in 1927, showing its first bus in October of that year in Cleveland. In July 1928, Brooks produced a second bus prototype.
The Brooks story is also a story of stock sales and swindles and country hopping. Brooks sold stock to individuals in a rather suspect manner. Hence Brooks stock certificates and receitps survive in relatively large numbers. This history has yet to be written.
VSCM is pleased to share its collection that includes stockholder's information, presented here in chronological order.
This Brooks Steam Coach advertisement appeared on May 18, 1926 in an unidentified newspaper.
This envelope, dated January 1, 1927, carried a brochure promoting the Brooks Steam Motors car to Mr. M. T. Sprangers of St. Cloud, MN. There is a reprint of this brochure done by Mt. Hood Reprints.
This Brooks advertising brochure mirrors the Stanley Motor Carriage brochure of a nearly identical name. This suggests that Brooks was advertising to Stanley customers. This brochure was probably printed about 1925 - 1927.
As are all Brooks Steam Motors brochures, this Instruction Manual is undated. but was likely issued wtih the first automobiles, about 1925. This is a Mt. Hood Reprint.
The Brooks Steamer piping diagram. It may have come from an instruction manual.
Steam Automobiles are PIPED, not PLUMBED. The word Plumbing originates with the Latin word for lead, which the Romans used to plumb their buildings.
Both Floyd Clymer (left) and the Steam Automobile Club of America (SACA) (right) have reproduced this Brooks Steam Motors, Ltd. Advertising Brochure.
This Brooks brochure illustratees both its automobile and its earlier bus. Although undated, this brochure was probably produced in 1927 or 1928.
This Brooks brochure shows the earlier version of its steam bus, ca: 1927 - early 1928.
This advertisement for the Central Allow Steel Corp. featured the Brooks Steam Bus. It appeared in Automotive Industries, July
14, 1928, p. 53. The bus shown is the earlier of the two Brooks' bus designs.
These two single page promotional sheets may once have been together. The sheet above promotes the automobile and the sheet below promotes the bus.
A Brooks Steam Motors, Inc. representative namec A. Schrutger used this. The company address is Jamaica, New York, with its factory in Buffalo.
Brooks Steam Motors, Inc., now located in Buffalo, NY, produced this steam bus brochure sometime in 1929.
The Brooks Steam Motors, Inc., of Buffalo, NY, produced a second steam bus brochure, entitled Brooks Steam Coach.
The Brooks Steam Motors bus. This press photograph has been altered for better appearance. Note the black ink around the front of the bus. The photo is dated October 30, 1930 and was taken in front of the Company's Buffalo, NY factory.
The Virtual Steam Car Museum holds several stock certificates and literature related to four parties that invested in the Brooks enterprise. Brooks Steam Motors Ltd. and Inc. awaits a scholarly treatment.
Brooks Steam Motors, LTD. issued this stock certificate for twenty shares to John B. Hislop on January 2, 1925.
A Mr. Arthur H. Geldart invested in Brooks Steam Motors, Ltd., making his first payment on May 9 and two subsequent payuments on May 18 October 12, 1925, when he was Paid In Full.
This is C. Fisher's common stock certificate, issued on December 1, 1927.
This is J. M. Barber's Brooks Steam Motors, Inc. stock certificte, issued on June 15, 1931. Barber had the company's December 31, 1930 Consolidated Balance Sheet along with a letter inviting him to the 1932 Stockholder's meeting.
Grover and Bernice Clemmons invested in Brooks Steam Motors, Inc. in late 1932.
The Murray family, Herbert, Margaret, and Charles invested in Brooks Steam Motors, Inc. They lived in West Vancouver, Canada.
The City of Stratford, Ontario produced this commemorative coin in 1986, celebrating the city's industry and arts.