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(.15 cu. ft.: 1(.5) DB)

by: Don Darroch & Robert S. Harding, October 1990


The Timken Roller Bearing Co., of Canton, Ohio, produced its first tapered roller bearings in the 1890s. The bearings were first used in horse-drawn vehicles and later in automobiles. As automobiles improved in design, power, and endurance, Timken made improvements in its bearings to compensate. The company soon realized that the only way to ensure quality in its product was through the production of its own special alloy steel. It organized the Timken Steel & Tube Company to supply both itself and other manufacturers with high-grade steel. In the late 1920s, the company entered the railroad equipment supply market with special tapered bearings for use in locomotives. Timken continued to supply components for use in the railroad rolling-stock, automotive, and other manufacturing industries. It set high standards for such products, both in engineering and materials quality.

Scope and Content:

The material in this collection primarily consists of technical papers written by Timken engineers which were presented in journals and meetings of professional societies. The papers all deal with the use of Timken roller bearings and other products in locomotives and other rolling stock on U.S. railroads and rapid transit systems. In addition to professional papers, there are also articles from trade magazines and brochures advertising Timken products and a 1925 U.S. Bureau of Mines study of friction in mine-car wheels. A volume on railway engineering from 1929-1945  is also included.


This collection was donated to the Archives Center, NMAH, on September 25, 1990, by Frank G. Pauly. Mr. Pauly had been employed as a Sales Engineer in Timken's Railroad Division, working out of the Chicago Sales Office, which was closed in 1966.

Container List

Box Folder 
1 Timken-Equipped Locomotives, 1930-1957
Bureau of Mines Bulletin #20: Mine-car Friction, 1925
3 Timken Papers on Railway Engineering, 1929-1945 

by: Don Darroch & Robert S. Harding, October 1990
revised:  C. A. Orr, January 1992


Revised: January 25, 2002