Antique Barn Pulleys and Hay Equipment
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Robert Rauhauser, Thomasville, Pa., sometimes trades with Barry and others across the country. His collection includes hundreds of pieces of barn and haying equipment.
"I'm still adding to my collections, mainly by trading," he explains. "I just added a haymow fork from a collector who leans more toward kitchen collectibles. I traded a rare egg beater and got boot money besides. There are still haymow forks in other collections that I know about that I'd like to add to my own, even though I have over 100 different forks."
Robert recommends researching old patents and manufacturer's catalogs to learn more about barn equipment.
"I photocopy from a 1929 Louden's catalog in York, Pa.," he says. "The Louden Machinery Co. of Fairfield, Iowa, was probably the biggest manufacturer of barn equipment. They even sold plans for barns."
Some haymow forks have barbed points to enter and hold loose hay, and some have smaller shank hooks which revolve into the hay to hold it when rope tension increases. Others look like giant ice tongs, and swivel under tension to hook into hay. Some of the latter are likely blacksmith-made and bear no maker's mark, but whoever made them deserves an award for function and design.
"I don't believe you would have many farmers today if they had to put hay away by hand, like they did in the olden days," Robert observes. "It was nothing but hard, dirty work with a lot of hardships and tragedies." FC
For more information:
-John E. Currie, RR 1, Tarkio, MO 64491.
-Barry Merenoff, PO Box 480338, New Haven, MI 48048.
-Robert Rauhauser, Box 766 R2, Thomasville, PA 17364.
Gary Van Hoozer is a Missouri writer specializing in vintage agriculture and farm history.
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