Successful Shorthorn and Clydesdale breeder and exhibitor and pioneer in the Canadian automobile industry and agricultural equipment.
1877-1940 | Artist: Joseph Allworthy (1892-1991)
Impact & Accomplishments
In 1879, Thomas Alexander Russell’s father became one of the first importers of William Duthie Shorthorns, from his native Scotland to Ontario, where he had settled with his family. Although Thomas, Jr., earned a political science degree from the University of Toronto in 1899, he worked the cattle business with his father until 1910, when he established his own Shorthorn cattle and Clydesdale horse operation, Brae Lodge.
Russell was a successful exhibitor at the Canadian National Exhibition, the Provincial Winter Fair, the Ottawa Winter Fair, and the International Live Stock Exposition in Chicago. In 1900, Russell took a position as executive secretary of the Canadian Cycle and Motor Company (CCM), and with a newfound love of the automobile, he set out to design his own car. In 1905, he introduced the Russell Model A. With the success of the car and other motor vehicles, the Russell Motor Car Company absorbed CCM.
In the final decade of his life, T. A. Russell served as president of the Massey-Harris Company, the agricultural equipment manufacturer later known as Massey Ferguson.
Did You Know?
Line of Russell cars, by the Russell Motor Car Company, sitting outside Toronto City Hall, Ontario, Canada. The builder, T.A. Russell, sits beside the driver in the first car. T.A. (Tommy) Russell was a prominent east-end resident, and the man behind the Canadian Cycle and Motor Company Ltd. (CC&M for short), and was later president of the Massey-Harris (later Massey-Ferguson) company.
The Canadian Magazine April 1906