Early 1900's Warner Rope Oper. Freight Elevator

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I don't have an elevator problem, per se... However I am very interested in finding information on my elevator. The building I now own in located in Pell City, AL. It had been a hardware store from 1902 until 1994. My parents hardware store from mid-80s until 1994. I grew through my teenage years working in this building and using the elevator almost everyday. It is approx 6ft x 6ft, operates to 2 floors and a basement. Still using the original 5ft+ rope pulley, it had been converted into an electric motor/belt drive in the late 50's or early 60's. It has a flip style lever that has three positions up-off-down. Otherwise the mechanics are 100% original and still working today. Rotary mechanical brake and all.

It reads "Warner Elevator Mfg. Co. Cin'ti OH" in hand painted letters on the cross beam, and also has a metal plate saying the same at its center. I found a "delivery" tag nailed to the inside of the uppermost part of the arbor shaft, but there is no date listed. I have many questions that hopefully someone here would help me with.

1. Is there any way to truly date this elevator? 2. How many like it do you suppose are still in operation? 3. It was definitely not in the original construction plan, as the floor and ceiling joists were cut out for installation. Would Warner have installed this, or delivered it as a kit? 4. Is this elevator of any true historical value to any person or organization other than myself?

Thank You J Gossett

-- Jeremy Gossett (jeremygossett@msn.com), February 13, 2005


It sounds like from your description you still have a working tiller and rope type elevator.

-- jeff (tbec@pacbell.net), February 14, 2005.

Warner Elevator Co. was founded in 1860.They made many elevators before being sold to Shepard Elevator Co., also of Cincinnati, Ohio, The combination was called Shepard-Warner Elevator Co. This was sold to Dover Corp. in about 1959 and eventually became Dover Elevator which was sold to ThyssenKrupp around 1990.

If you can locate a serial number, it would help to "date" the elevator. If I recall correctly, Warner made about 16,000 elevators before being sold to Shepard in the 50's.

Is the car frame wood, or steel? How about the guide rails?

-- John Brannon (akaelevman@aol.com), February 14, 2005.

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