More information



We had intended to amplify the website material in a conventional book, but the size and complexity of the project—not to mention the hundreds of high quality illustrations—have raised costs to a point where, for the moment at least, they are uneconomic. Fortunately, thanks to the generosity of the Canadian Museum of Making sponsorship in 2006–9, we can give free access to each of the chapters (as completed!) as 'work in progress', with the intention of publishing the story in three parts. The current draft of the first part can be viewed by clicking the 'Publications' button (left) and following the link.

Marks found on indicators

American Steam Gauge Company, Chardon Street, Boston, Massachusetts, USA (with a 'New York Branch' in Dey Street, New York City, and a 'Western Branch' in North Canal Street, Chicago). Made Richards indicators, then Thompson and 'American Thompson' designs, internal- and external-spring, from the early/mid 1870s apparently until taken over by Schaeffer & Budenberg during the First World War.
Ashcroft Manufacturing Company, New York City, and Bridgeport, Connecticut, USA. Made internal- and external-spring Tabor indicators from about 1880 to the First World War.


A typical advertisement published in Cassier's Magazine by the American Steam Gauge Company. This, which dates from 1903, helpfully records than more than five thousand indicators of this type had by then been made — a great help when it comes to dating individual examples.

Bacharach Industrial Instrument Company, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA. Originally imported Maihak indicators prior to 1939 (?), but then began production in the USA. Work continued until the 1950s.
Sir W.H. Bailey & Co. Ltd, Salford and Patricroft, Manchester, England. Reportedly found on a Richards-type indicator made by Casartelli.
Buckeye Engine Company, Salem, Ohio, USA. Made the original Thompson-type indicators, but only for a few years.

J. Casartelli & Sons Ltd, Manchester, England. Made Richards, 'Improved Richards' and own-brand indicators from the 1870s until 1914 or later.
A. Clair, Saint-Étienne (?), France. Made Guinotte and other indicators.
Corry Instrument Company, Corry, Pennsylvania, USA. Made (or perhaps simply assembled) a few Trill indicators, 1945-7.
Crosby Steam Gage & Valve Company, Boston, New York, Chicago and London. Made internal-spring and external-spring Crosby indicators until the 1930s.

Marcel Deprez, Paris (?), France. Probably made by Garnier or Lefebvre.
Dreyer, Rosenkranz & Droop, Hannover, Germany. Made a few Richards and then many Thompson-type indicators, including an exposed-spring design patented in 1902. Continued production independently until c. 1937.
Dobbie McInnes Ltd, Glasgow, Scotland. Made McInnes, McInnes-Dobbie and Dobbie McInnes indicators from 1903 until 1921, and then again from 1937 until the late 1950s.
Dobbie McInnes & Clyde Ltd, Glasgow, Scotland. A trading style found on McInnes-Dobbie and Dobbie McInnes indicators only from 1921 until 1937, when a reversion was made to the orignal name.
A. Duvergier, Lyon, France. Made McNaught-type indicators in the 1860s, often fitted with continuous-recording drums.

a typical example of the ephemera produced by Dobbie Mcinnes and Dobbie McInnes & Clyde Ltd. This particular example, which dates prior to the First World War, includes the rarely-seen Mathot continuous indicator used with internal-combustion engines.

Elliott Brothers (Ltd), London, England. Made Richards, Richards-Darke, Darke, Wayne and SImplex indicators from 1863 until the First World War.
Engineering Appliance Company, Jamestown, New York, USA. Made Excelsior and Howard-Thompson indicators from the early 1890s until 1902.
Engineering & Power Company, Jamestown, New York, USA. Superseded the Engineering Applicance Company in 1902, but was then purchased by Trill in 1910.

Paul Garnier, Paris, France. Two generations of clockmakers made McNaught-type, Martin and Deprez indicators from the 1860s until c.1900
Globe Engineering Co. Ltd [The], Manchester, England. Promoted Ashcroft-made Tabor indicators in the early 1890s.

Hall Brown, Buttery & Company, Glasgow, Scotland. Made distinctive Thompson-type indicators from c. 1895 until 1901.
John Hannan, Glasgow. The predecessor of Hannan & Buchanan, active from the 1850s. Made McNaught indicators, apparently for McNaught himself.
Hannan & Buchanan, Glasgow, Scotland. Made Richards, McKinnell & Buchanan and Thompson-type indicators from 1869 until the First World War.
Hine & Robertson, New York. Made Thompson-type indicators from the 1880s until 31st December 1896, when the trading name changed to James L. Robertson & Sons.
Hodgson Hartley Ltd, Manchester, England. Found on Ashcroft-made Tabor indicators sold in the 1900-14 period.
Joseph Hopkinson, Huddersfield, Yorkshire, England. Made co-axial and parallel-axis non-amplifying indicators from c. 1854 until 1877.

Kraft & Sohn, Vienna, Austria(-Hungary). Made Richards and Thompson-type indicators from the 1870s until 1900 or later.

Victor Lefebvre, Paris (?), France. Made Thompson-type indicators from the early 1880s until 1895 or later.
Lehmann & Michels, Altona bei Hamburg and Hamburg, Germany. Made Crosby-type external-spring indicators from 1919 (possibly earlier) until the end of the Second World War. Very similar to some of the Maihak products, which were originally protected by the same 1906 patent. Lehmann & Michels indicators are still being made in modernised forms.
Leutert GmbH, Germany. Makers of Maihak-style external-spring and torsion-bar indicators since 1985.
W.G. Little & Company, Bexley, Kent, England. Made patented integrating indicators, apparently using Crosby components.
Lippincott Steam & Specialty Company, New York. Made surprisingly large quantities of Lippincott indicators and planimeters, etc, from the 1890s until, perhaps, as late as 1914.

R. McAughtry & Son, Glasgow, Scotland. Sole Britain and British Empire distributor for German-made Maihak instruments, 1921-52. Succeeded by 'Smail Sons & Co.', below.
T.S. McInnes, Glasgow, Scotland. Makers of McInnes-patent internal-spring indicators from c. 1887 until Dobbie McInnes was formed in 1903. Became '& Co.' in 1889 and '& Co. Ltd' in 1894.
McInnes & Cairns, Glasgow, Scotland, and Liverpool, England.
A ships chandlery that sold, among other things, McInnes-made indicators.
Maihak GmbH & Companie, Hamburg, Germany. Maker of Crosby-type external indicators from c. 1909 onward.
Metallwerker AG, Meerane in Sachsen, German Democratic Republic. Maker of Maihak-type indicators in the 1950s and 1960s.
John Musgrave & Sons Ltd, Bolton, Lancashire, England. Sold Ashcroft-made Tabor indicators in the 1890s.


A label found in the lid of a box containing a Richards-type indicator, apparently incorporating improvements made by Thomas Struthers McInnes. The style '& Co. Ltd' suggests that the label (if not necessarily the indicator itself) dates from 1894 or later.

Negretti & Zambra, London, England.
Novelty Iron Works, New York City, USA. Made McNaught-type indicators in the 1850s, and also the prototype Richards indicator of 1862.

James L. Robertson & Sons, New York City, with 'Branch Offices in Boston, Philadelphia, St. Louis', USA. Succeeded Hine & Robertson on 1st January 1897, making New Century and Robertson-Thompson indicators, internal- and external-spring types, until 1910 or later.

Schaeffer & Budenberg, Brooklyn, New York City and Chicago. Imported German-made Thompson indicators (internal- and external-spring types) until the First World War began, then began to make 'American Thompson' instruments in the USA.
Schaeffer & Budenberg GmbH, Buckau bei Magdeburg (later Magdeburg-Buckau), Germany. Made Thompson-type indicators from the 1880s until the end of the First World War.
Schaeffer & Budenberg Ltd, Manchester, England. Marketed indicators made by the German parent company prior to 1914. Subsequently became the Budenburg Gauge Co. Ltd.
Ernest Scott & Co. Ltd, Newcastle upon Tyne, England. Said to have marked Richards-type indicators made by Casartelli.
Smail Sons & Company, Glasgow, Scotland. Distributed German-made Maihak instruments from 1952 onward. See 'McAughtry', above.
Star Brass Manufacturing Company, Boston, Massachusetts, USA, and London, England. Made internal- and external-spring indicators from the 1880s until the 1920s?
Isaac Storey & Sons, Cornbrook, Manchester, England. Made Kenyon's Pistonless Indicator in the 1880s.

Thompson & Bushnell Company, New York City, USA. Made the Bachelder indicators from c. 1888 until 1905 or later.
Trill Indicator Company, Corry, Pennsylvania, USA. Made Triumph and Trill indicators, internal- and external-spring types, from 1901 until the end of the Second World War.

Whyte, Thomson & Company, Glasgow, Scotland. Formed in 1889, and made a few Thompson-type and 'own brand' indicators in the early twentieth century.


The only Whyte, Thomson & Company indicator found to date, 'Model I' no. 305. Superficially similar to the 1887-patent McInnes design, it differs internally. Owing to the use of McInnes-type Vulcanite sheathing on the body, it is suspected that the instrument dates no earlier than 1901.Museum of Making collection.