New Holland tractors have a long history with a company that dates back to 1895. In that year Abram Zimmerman bought a one horse barn located on the outskirts of New Holland, PA. From these humble beginnings the company grew and merged with other companies to become one of the world leaders of tractor and farm machinery manufacturing.
Zimmerman’s early work was to invent a gasoline engine that would not crack during freezing weather. His engines found use in various ways on the farm from crushing rocks to running washing machines and churning butter. The gasoline engine allowed many farm households to enjoy modern conveniences before rural electrification. It became a name that was trusted for farm equipment.
The years of the Great Depression were difficult times for survival of the New Holland company. Farmers lost possessions and lands and did not have money to buy the New Holland equipment. Financial outlook for the company was bleak until the development of the New Holland hay baler. It is said that the baler that was able to tie the bales it made automatically was the reason the company survived and began to thrive.
During 1947 the company was purchased by the Sperry Corporation and was named Sperry New Holland. Seventeen years later, the company purchased a large share in a Belgium combine company.
The company produced lawn equipment until 1974 when the lawn equipment portion of the company was sold to Ariens. About the same time, Ford motor company purchased Sperry New Holland and brought a wealth of engineering history to the company. The merger with Ford worked well, because up until this time, there had been little overlap in the product lines the two companies had produced. Later Ford sold the New Holland division to Fiat.
These changes and mergers allowed the company to continue to grow. Along the way they acquired a construction equipment division. That division was sold in North America but continues in other parts of the world. In fact, in some countries, New Holland is a leader in construction equipment.
In the U. S. And the rest of North America, the company produced a wide variety of farm equipment. Today they produce tractors as well as equipment that is used in crop production, the hay field and in materials handling.
The company provides tractors of all sizes. They manufacture very large tractors for use in large fields as well as smaller tractor designed for use by the small scale farmer.
Today, the corporation is one of the leading farm machinery manufacturers in the world. While it ranks third in the United States, in Europe, parts of Latin America and Asia it is the leading supplier of this machinery. Today, Fiat New Holland is truly a world company.
While the New Holland company had a very humble beginning in a small blacksmith shop, today New Holland tractors affect agriculture on a worldwide basis. As Abram Zimmerman faced the successes and failures of an inventor working on a hit and miss engine, he probably never thought that his little company would grow so large in just over 100 years.
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