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Lombard number plate


I had the opportunity to make a copy of the rarest of things, an original number plate from a Lombard log hauler, # 70 to be exact. This is one of the few operable steam Lombards left, at Clark's Trading Post in New Hampshire. For some reason the number plate for that Lombard was in the pile of parts that the Maine Forest and Logging Museum got when they aquired #38. The number plate was probably one of the first things to walk off when the steam Lombards were abandoned at various old logging camps.
The number plate that I made for#38 was based off the plate on #39, which is in Ashland, Me. Amazingly enough that one is original, and is still on the log hauler. Hen's teeth are common in comparison, methinks.
So, even though the mold has been sitting for a week, I cast it this morning, came out pretty good. There are a few differences in the original and the pattern I made for#38. The letters on mine are a little higher relief, and the font was as close as I could find to match the original.
The biggest difference, however, remains a mystery, and may never be solved. Notice on #70 the patent date is missing. #64, the Crooker machine on loan to Maine Forest & Logging Museum, is also missing the patent date, and I believe that plate is original also. So the question is, where in the number sequence did the patent date get taken off? The last one I am aware of is #39, so at some point between that and #64 it went missing. If anyone knows, let me know, this is one of those things that will bug me until I croak.