Early Steam Tractor Design

A look at some of the oddest tractors

No. 15. Minnis’ first Iowa farm tractor, 1869-70. Note it is a crawler and he brought it out from Pennsylvania to start breaking the virgin sod at Ames within sight of the state agricultural college about the time it opened its doors to the first bunch of students. Both the USDA, 1870, and Iowa State Agricultural Society reports gave it some space with letter from Minnis telling of the trials and tribulations of inventing, building and operating a traction engine at that date.
No. 15. Minnis’ first Iowa farm tractor, 1869-70. Note it is a crawler and he brought it out from Pennsylvania to start breaking the virgin sod at Ames within sight of the state agricultural college about the time it opened its doors to the first bunch of students. Both the USDA, 1870, and Iowa State Agricultural Society reports gave it some space with letter from Minnis telling of the trials and tribulations of inventing, building and operating a traction engine at that date.
from the collection of F. Hal Higgins