Big Brutus the Kansas Coal Shovel

Big Brutus, the Kansas Coal Shovel

by Brenda Eck

illustrated by Jessie Pohl

Big Brutus put the oooohs and aaahs in the backyard of the Heartlands! Miles before you reach this retired giant, you can see it on the horizon south of West Mineral, Kansas.


• Designed and built by Bucyrus-Erie for the Pittsburg & Midway (P&M) Coal Mining Company

• 150 railroad cars were needed to bring all the parts

• Bucyrus Erie Model 1850B is the only one of its kind ever built

• Largest electric shovel in the world

• 16 stories tall (160 feet)

• Weighs 11 million pounds

• Boom is 150 feet long

• Dipper capacity 90 cu. yds (by heaping, 150 tons—enough to fill three railroad cars)

• Maximum speed .22 MPH

• Cost $6.5 million (in 1962)

On July 13, 1985, Big Brutus was dedicated as “a Museum and Memorial Dedicated to the Rich Coal Mining History in Southeast Kansas.”

In September 1987, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) designated Big Brutus a Regional Historic Mechanical Engineering Landmark, the 10th since 1971 to be so designated.

Big Brutus is a museum open year round. Hours vary with the season. Visit or call (620) 827-6177 for more information.


Big Brutus, the Kansas Coal Shovel – Great little book on a great Kansas sight. – EE

ISBN: 978-1-939054-33-3

Softcover: Gloss laminate

Trim Size: 8.5″ x 11″

Pages: 24

Interior: Color

Juvenile Nonfiction : Curiosities & Wonders

Juvenile Nonfiction : Stories in Rhyme – Poetry – General

History – United States/State & Local

Books by Brenda Eck:

Big Brutus the Kansas Coal Shovel

My Two Great Great Aunts

Big Brutus the Kansas Coal Shovel

Big Brutus, the Kansas Coal Shovel

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24 pages, color interior, softcover

Price: $12.00


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