This model, built around 1890 by the Great Grandfather of Fred Leonard, Mr. Thomas Walton, captures the likes of the steam engines that were used at the mines in England in the late 1800’s. This prize-winning 12×18 UK stationary engine received 12 award certificates from events in the late 1890s and early 1900s. Born in the town of Bishop Auckland, Thomas Walton moved to the town of Brotton, about 50 miles southeast of his birthplace, where he worked as a Colliery Engineer (someone who built and maintained mining machinery).

Steam engines were used at the mines to power pumps, air compressors, hoists, and ore crushers. Thomas built this working model as a replica of the engines used at the mines. Each piece was built from scratch, down to the smallest nut and bolt. Between 1893 and 1905, Thomas entered the model in several events winning numerous awards including Best Working Model of an Engine. This model has survived several generations, a long boat trip across the Atlantic, and numerous moves across North America. Donated by Fred Leonard. 

Exhibit added: April 21, 2018 - Last modified: March 30, 2023

Presented by The Joe Martin Foundation for Exceptional Craftsmanship