Model of Bucyrus-Erie Stripping Shovel


In 1960, the Bucyrus-Erie Company of South Milwaukee, Wisconsin, presented this 14-inch-high, scale model of what was to become the world's largest stripping shovel to President Dwight D. Eisenhower. Later that year, the President transferred this gift to the Smithsonian Institution. The Bucyrus-Erie Company had custom-designed this monster machine for the Peabody Coal Company. Bucyrus-Erie engineers anticipated that they would need two years to manufacture the behemoth, and an additional six months to assemble it at the site of the open-pit mine. (They planned to ship the machine's parts in over 250 railcars.) When finished, the shovel would weigh 7,000 tons, soar to the roofline of a 20-story building (some 220 feet high), and be able to extend its enormous 115-cubic-yard dipper over 460 feet, or about the length of an average city block. (The dipper's capacity would equal that of about six stand-sized dump trucks.) Fifty electric motors-ranging from 1/4 to 3,000 horsepower-would power the shovel, which was designed to be controlled by a single operator, perched in a cab five stories high. Publicists for Bucyrus-Erie called this the "largest self-powered mobile land vehicle ever built."

Date Made: 1960

Recipient: Eisenhower, Dwight D.Maker: Bucyrus-Erie Company

Location: Currently not on view

Place Made: United States: Wisconsin, South Milwaukee

See more items in: Work and Industry: Mechanical and Civil Engineering, Government, Politics, and Reform, Energy & Power, Engineering, Building, and Architecture, Industry & Manufacturing, Natural Resources


Exhibition Location:

Credit Line: President Dwight D. Eisenhower

Data Source: National Museum of American History

Id Number: MC.317688Catalog Number: 317688Accession Number: 231557

Object Name: model of Bucyrus-Erie stripping shovel

Measurements: overall: 14 in x 4 3/8 in x 15 in; 35.56 cm x 11.1125 cm x 38.1 cm


Record Id: nmah_846320

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