Chasing Farm Literature
(Page 4 of 5)
He finds collecting literature more interesting than buying toys or big machinery, because with the literature you can sit down and get information out of it.
"And the historical aspect of it," he adds. "I've been real fortunate to be able to buy about ten large collections of literature over the years. Literature is just very attractive to me. When I find a new piece, whether it's interesting or not, if I don't have it, it goes in my collection."
He says he has five drawers of lateral files filled with farm literature, and ten bookcases.
"I had an uncle who was an implement dealer in the town I live in, so there are just some things that come naturally to you," he says. "I've always liked literature, ever since I was a kid. When I got out of high school, I got away from it for a couple of years, but now I'm back."
So What's It Worth?
That's difficult to pinpoint, people agree. One long-time Iowa collector of all kinds of farm machinery, who declined to be named, says farm sales literature is getting pretty expensive.
"I've been hunting around all over for sales literature on an F-30, which is one of the hardest to find in the older Farmalls, but there just isn't that much available. I finally found a poster, but it wasn't cheap."
"I'd say you have to get to know the market," Goodman says. "You could lay ten pieces on the table, and all of them would look alike if you're not dealing in them, but there could be quite a difference in the value."
That said, he adds that "The number of pages in a piece of literature doesn't really tell you, or the age – in fact, with older stuff you can actually reach a point where an item gets too old. I personally have as good luck selling the New Generation John Deere literature as I do the two-cylinder stuff."
Daryl Miller generally determines the value of a piece at 50 cents per year; if a piece of literature is 20 years old, then it's worth $10.
"But it's different with John Deere, because that literature is worth more," he says. "And Ford is not as popular, so you have to go the other way. Then Allis-Chalmers and Case are probably mediocre types of literature. John Deere is the most popular literature that I see."
Whatever the reason people collect farm machinery – and there are dozens of reasons – Clarence Goodburn probably echoes every true farm literature collector when he says, "It's exciting work. It's a treasure hunt for me every day."
Search for Literature Keeps Collectors Scrambling
Farm literature – though tougher to find today than it used to be – is still available. It can be found for sale or trade at pioneer day shows, thresherees, swap meets and tractor shows (see the Farm Collector Show Directory for lists of shows in your area).
Page: << Previous 1
| 4 | 5
| Next >>