Elmer F. Lovejoy papers, 1891-1945

Overview of the Collection

Lovejoy, Elmer F., 1872-1960
Elmer F. Lovejoy papers
1891-1945 (inclusive)
1.15 cubic ft. (3 boxes)
Collection Number
The collection includes a record book, film, correspondence, patents of this Laramie, Wyoming businessman and inventor.
American Heritage Center, University of Wyoming
American Heritage Center
University of Wyoming
1000 E. University Ave.
Dept. 3924
Laramie, WY
Telephone: 3077663756
Access Restrictions
Access Restrictions

There are no access restrictions on the materials for research purposes, and the collection is open to the public.

The creation of the EAD-version of this finding aid was made possible through a grant from the National Historic Publications and Records Commission.

Historical NoteReturn to Top

Elmer Floyd Lovejoy was a Laramie, Wyoming, businessman and inventor. He was born in Illinois on February 2, 1872, to George W. Lovejoy and his wife. Elmer Lovejoy came to Laramie in 1883 for health reasons and soon developed an interest in mechanics. He opened a general repair shop, Lovejoy Novelty Works, at 412 S. 2nd St. in 1893, and a few years later he built a steam-powered automobile incorporating design innovations of his own. In 1902, he built and drove Laramie’s first steam-driven automobile. In 1905, he invented an automobile steering gear, and in 1918 and 1921 he patented designs for automatic garage door openers. Lovejoy also operated a dealership for Franklin automobiles. Lovejoy was active in the Laramie Bicycle Club and was an amateur photographer. On August 27, 1895, he married Nellie Oakley. The couple had a son, Orell, who was born in 1898.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The collection includes a record book (1891-1895) of the Laramie Cycling Club; 3 rolls of 16mm motion picture film depicting University of Wyoming homecoming parades of 1929 and 1930, the 1938 U.W. commencement, and a 1939 pet parade; a 1921 letter concerning a patent; records of the Lovejoy Novelty Works from 1906-1945; United States patents for his automatic door openers; and Laramie area photographs.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

Copyright Information

The researcher assumes full responsibility for observing all copyright, property, and libel laws as they apply.

Preferred Citation

Preferred Citation

Item Description, Box Number, Folder Number, Elmer F. Lovejoy papers, 1891-1945, Collection Number 00176, American Heritage Center, University of Wyoming.

Alternative Forms Available

Existence and Location of Copies

Digital reproductions of select material from this collection are available at http://digitalcollections.uwyo.edu:8180/luna/servlet/uwydbuwy~118~118.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Related Materials

Related Materials

There are no other known archival collections created by Elmer F. Lovejoy at the date of processing.

Acquisition Information

Acquisition Information

The Elmer F. Lovejoy papers were received from Elmer Lovejoy in 1951, 1952, and 1959.

Processing Note

Processing Information

The collection was processed by D.C. Thompson in May 2000.

Portions of the collection were digitized by Kathy Gerlach in March 2013.

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
1 1 Business Card undated
1 2 Laramie Bicycle Club
Record book.
1 3 Laramie Bicycle Club
Rules and regulations.
1 4 Lovejoy Novelty Works
Account book.
1906-1924, 1945
1 5 Pamphlets and Miscellaneous Printed Material 1911-circa 1943
1 6 Patent: Garage Door Opener March 1918
1 7 Patent: Garage Door Opener July 1918
1 8 Patent: Garage Door Opener December 1918
1 9 Patent: Garage Door Opener May 1921
1 10 Patent: Sketches undated
1 11 Photographs: Album Pages
Laramie parades; fire company races; Libby Creek; Sand Creek.
1 12 Photographs: Automobile Race
Thomas Flyer New York to Paris Racers in Laramie.
March 1908
1 13 Photographs: Coxey’s Army in Laramie/Bicycle 1893
1 14 Photographs: Cramer, Frank 1893
1 15 Photographs: Dale Creek Railroad Bridge circa 1890s
1 16 Photographs: Elks Club undated
1 17 Photographs: Fish Hatchery undated
1 18 Photographs: Hunting and Fishing Scenes 1896-1906
1 19 Photographs: Laramie
Streets and buildings.
1 20 Photographs: Laramie Bicycle Club 1890s
1 21 Photographs: Lovejoy, Elmer
With bicycle and automobiles.
circa 1894-circa 1912
1 22 Photographs: Lovejoy Shops 1895-1908
2 1 Photographs: Miscellaneous undated
2 2 Photographs: National Guard/Laramie Militia circa 1890s
2 3 Photographs: Picnics and Excursions
Tatum’s Ranch; Centennial; Brooklyn Lake; Blackburn Ranch.
circa 1900-1910
2 4 Photographs: Railroad Rolling Mills undated
2 5 Photographs: Railroad Snow Scenes
Laramie; Sherman Hill.
2 6 Photographs: Railroad Wrecks
Two different wrecks, two views each.
2 7 Photographs: Sherman Hill Blast
For new Dale Creek construction.
2 8 Photographs: Trabing Store
Includes fire destruction.
circa 1895-circa 1902
2 9 Photographs: University of Wyoming (Old Main) 1896
2 10 Photographs: Wilcox Train Robbery
Exploded baggage and express car (2 views).
3 1 Film: Pet Parade
3 2 Film: University of Wyoming Graduation
3 3 Film: University of Wyoming Homecoming Parade
1929, 1930

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

Subject Terms

  • Automobile dealers--Wyoming--Laramie.
  • Automobile racing.
  • Automobiles--Wyoming--Laramie.
  • Cycling--Wyoming--Laramie.
  • Fish hatcheries--Wyoming--Albany County.
  • Fishing--Wyoming.
  • Hunting--Wyoming.
  • Inventions--Wyoming--Laramie.
  • Mechanically-operated doors--Patents.
  • Motion pictures--Wyoming--Laramie.
  • Parades--Wyoming--Laramie.
  • Pets--Wyoming--Laramie.
  • Railroad accidents--Wyoming.
  • Railroad bridges--Wyoming.
  • Railroads--Snow-plows.
  • Ranch houses--Wyoming.
  • Train robberies--Wyoming.

Personal Names

  • Cramer, Frank.

Corporate Names

  • Laramie Cycling Club.
  • Lovejoy Novelty Works.
  • Trabing Commercial Company.
  • University of Wyoming--History.

Geographical Names

  • Centennial (Wyo.)
  • Laramie (Wyo.)
  • Libby Creek (Albany County, Wyo.)
  • Red Buttes (Albany County, Wyo.)
  • Sand Creek (Albany County, Wyo.)
  • Sherman Hill (Wyo.)

Form or Genre Terms

  • Business records.
  • Motion pictures.
  • Patents.
  • Photographs.


  • Businessmen.
  • Inventors.