A couple of new voices have joined the choir: Larry Scheckel from Tomah, Wis., and Gordon Shoger from way down south in Texas are making their debut in this issue of Farm Collector.
As his “threshing day” memoir attests, Larry either has an exceptionally keen memory or took copious notes as a boy of 4. It is clear that the annual event loomed large in his boyhood and impressions of machinery, people and activities were imprinted on his memory. Even idle chatter overheard during lunch breaks half a century ago rings true.
It is easy to picture Larry and his brothers scampering over the farm like a trio of puppies, desperate to be part of the action but mindful of the admonition to “stay out of the way.” Whether you have similar memories or just a fuller understanding of threshing rings, you’ll enjoy Larry’s account of a cherished rural tradition.
Gordon also reaches back across the decades to recall a cherished family member: Dewey, defender of the farmstead. In the process of describing one epic battle, he skillfully alludes to another; both are classic tales of the American farm. In a beautifully written essay, Gordon captures memories familiar to many of us. Don’t be surprised if a lump fills your throat!
And those are just the newbies. Old familiar friends like Bill Vossler, Sam Moore, Clell Ballard and George Wanamaker are in the house as well. They’ve spun tales about the uniquely speedy (and cleverly designed) Friday tractor, early corn planters designed and manufactured by George Brown, a “never say die” 1949 Ford pickup and the Moline Plow Company’s Flying Dutchman line. Farm Collector staffer Matt Kelly rounds out the offering, dropping in on a fast-growing garden tractor display at the Midwest Old Threshers Reunion in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa.
So take a break from the mowing. The grass will wait. Indulge in a bit of time travel in this issue of Farm Collector. It’s summer, and the living is easy! FC