Working Out the Kinks of Steam Plowing

Steam plowing moves past John Fowler’s two-engine system of steam cultivation

Fowler Steam Plows on the Road
Fowler no. 15326 and no. 15327 on the road between jobs. These engines were part of an order placed by the British government in 1918 for 90 sets of Fowler steam tackle (equipment) to help with the country’s effort to stave off the threatened starvation caused by the activities of German U-boats. The front engine is towing a cultivator and a balance plow, while the rear engine has the crew’s living van and the water wagon. A crew normally consisted of four men and a boy, with the boy responsible for cooking food and bringing morning and afternoon tea to the plowmen and engineers.
Photo courtesy U.K. Steam Plough Club archives