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Amazing Innovation: Johnson 1922-1965
June 21, 2017 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Multimedia presentation and tour of the Stevenson Outboard Collection.
The genius and partnership of the four Johnson brothers of Terre Haute, Indiana, epitomize the age of American mechanical innovation in the first half of the 20th century. They started building inboard 2-cycle marine engines in 1903 in a barn behind the house. By 1908, they were making V4, V6, V8, and V12 aircraft and marine engines. By 1910 they were building the first U.S. monoplane to exhibit their aircraft engines. In 1912, their V-12 was making 180 hp, when torrential rain, followed by flooding and a direct hit from a tornado severely damaged their factory. Incredibly, they started again and created Johnson Brothers Engineering in 1918. In 1922, they designed and built a radical new, lightweight outboard made largely of aluminum and by the mid-1920’s, they surpassed Evinrude in sales and dominated the outboard racing scene.
After the talk Larry Stevenson will conduct a tour of the newly opened Stevenson Outboard Collection, focusing on the outboard motors discussed in the presentation.
Admission is free, a suggested donation of $5 is appreciated.
This talk is presented by outboard motor collector and historian Larry Stevenson. Larry is a Navy and Coast Guard Auxiliary veteran and a retired UPS International Industrial Engineering Manager in the international operation with a passion for industrial design, art, history, and sailing.