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The Reading was a typical light steam carriage, although 4-cylinder engines were available as well as the more usual twins. The company was absorbed by the Meteor Engineering Co. in 1902, who introduced a larger car under their [sic] own name, although the light Reading design was continued to the end of 1903.[1]

The Meteor company was the successor to the Steam Vehicle Company of America, maker of the Reading steamer, and Meteor continued the design for one year. The Meteor car itself was larger than the Reading, being a four-passenger tonneau powered by a 4-cylinder horizontal engine of 10 hp. It had wheel steering, a De Dion-type hood, and the appearance of a gasoline-engined car. The price was $2,000 compared with the $800 for the smaller Reading.[2]

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Steam Vehicle Company of America, November 1900, The Automobile Magazine, Conde Collection.

The Automobile magazine carried this image of the "Reading Stanhope" in its November 1900 issue. John A. Conde Collection.

Steam Vehicle Company of America, November 1900, The Automobile Magazine, Conde Collection.

The Automobile magazine carried this article about "Reading Stanhope" in its November 1900 issue. John A. Conde Collection.

Reading Steam Carriage, Steam Vehicle Company of America, The Autocar, May 4, 1901

This Reading Steam Carriage advertisement appeared in The Autocar on May 4, 1901, page 49.

Reading Steam Carriage, Steam Vehicle Company of America, The Autocar, June 8, 1901

This Reading Steam Carriage advertisement appeared in The Autocar on June 8, 1901, page unknown.

Steam Vehicle Company of America, June 1902 Magazine Advertisement, The Strand Magazine, Conde Collection.

The June 1902 issue of The Strand Magazine carried this Reading Steamer advertisement. S. B. Bowman Auto Company of New York is listed as its agents. John A. Conde Collection.

Steam Vehicle Company of America, Reading Steamer, August 1902

The Reading Steamer advertisement appeared in August 1902 in a magazine entitled Current History and Modern Culture.

The Steam Vehicle Company of America, 1903, Trade Catalogue, Conde Collection.

This 32-page trade catalogue, dated 1903, carries many technical details and photographs, models and prices, and numeous testamonials. It carries the Pope Manufacuring Company collection file stamp and probably the AMA file stamp as well. It has had a hard life, having been disassembled, hole punched twice, and then reglued before being disassembled for scanning. Conde's note on the first page reads: "From John Wren, 4-94 Paid $60.00."John A. Conde Collection.

Meteor Engineering Company, Reading, PA, January 24, 1903, The Automobile, Meteor Steam Car, The Automobile

This is the Meteor Engineering Company's gasoline car as promoted in The Automobile magazine for January 24, 1903. John A. Conde Collection

John A. Conde's File Folder, Meteor Engineering Company

Conde's Meteor Steam Car File Folder. John A. Conde Collection.

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Conde's Reading Steam Car File Folder. John A. Conde Collection.

[1]Georgano, G. N., Encyclopedia of American Automobiles, (New York, E. P. Dutton & Co., 1968), p. 114. [2]Georgano, G. N., Encyclopedia of American Automobiles, (New York, E. P. Dutton & Co., 1968), p. 114.

Contact us if you have additional information about the Reading Steamer, the Steam Vehicle Company of America, or the Meteor Engineering Company, or if you have questions.

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This web page took eight to ten hours to scan, research, and design. Thank you for supporting the Virtual Steam Car Museum!