ROUGH & TUMBLE REPORT 1976

Larry Parkers roller

Larry Parkers roller after painting from Buffalo Springfield records, machine manufactured July 1920, Serial number 4753.

Content Tools

Box 146, County House Road, Mt. Royal, New Jersey 08061

On the Monday morning after the show, my wife succeeded in awakening me for my return to work, but I still felt as though I were Rip-Van-Winkle before his long sleep. In a semi-conscious state I put both feet on to the floor, but it was an effort and nothing wanted to move. My back needed someone to nail a hinge on it and I began wishing that all the joints of my limbs and screw down grease cups like the old Buffalo Springfield roller. For the remainder of the day, my steam gauge never got off the pin, and I wandered around in the lab hardly remembering what experiments I had been working with before I had departed for my vacation. (Hope my boss doesn't read this.)

As the day wore on I began to wonder how much other company I had and just how many of the officers, directors and 'dyed-in-the-wool' participants were floating on that same cloud of steam. Helping to promote a steam show is a laborous task and after all is over, we go home and can hardly persevere long enough to show off the plaque we received for our efforts. Mine will be nailed along the edge of my small model shelf, but soon I will have to put up another shelf for each year I get closer to the corner. As I nail up this year's commemorative tablet, I will be trying to visualize the design and color of the next one to follow it; and the next, and the next.

I have begun my story with what should really be the end, so let me go back firstly to our Bicentennial show held on July 1, 2 and 3.

During the first day the program ran normal until just before 4:00 P.M. when cars full of folks emerged upon us from all directions. The Southern Division of the Bicentennial Wagon Train was scheduled to arrive at Rough and Tumble this evening and I must say, there was certainly a reception.

My friend, George, drove the steam roller down alongside the lower drive-way and sitting up on the coal tray we were ready for a grandstand view. Other folks had either lined the roadways, climbed up the bank adjacent to the main highway, or clammered into the bed of their pickups.

For a crowd of this number there was remarkably little noise, then finally with a clear view all the way down to Fisher's, the first horse's heads appeared. Someone shouted 'Here they come', followed by everyone else saying the same thing. The noise died down again, and as the train grew nearer the R. & T. drive-way, the rumble of the iron shod wagon wheels and the pounding upon the highway of a thousand hoofs, became louder and louder.

This sight was something to behold, with Old Glory flying on one side of the wagons and the flag of their state on the other. Some were hauled by regular horses, some by mules, and even a team of small donkeys that were dressed in some of the most beautiful harnesses you ever saw. I cannot put into words this wonderful spectacle and it thrills me each time I think of it, for I know I shall never witness a sight such as this again. Old P. T. Barnham, with all his ingenuity, could never duplicate this show of shows.

After all the wagons had entered the grounds they lined themselves into three columns across our back lot where the process then began of unhitching, grooming and feeding the horse power. Later in the evening after all the wagons were secure, a show of horsemanship was exhibited on the tractor pull track featuring the Pequea 4.H. Beautiful horses and beautiful riding. The spectators were many, thick down either side of the bleechers and wagon train booklets sold like ice cream on the Sahara Desert.

On Friday morning the Kinzer Fire Company treated the wagon train members to a real Thresherman's breakfast and this we all considered very generous of them. At 8:00 A.M. the train moved out, and as they left our driveway, our President gave each wagon a copy of our Silver Anniversary book. They will always remember Rough & Tumble, and we will certainly remember them.

For the remainder of the show we performed the threshing, sawing, shingle mill, rock crushing, and the usual feats that go to make up our usual program. On the Saturday evening we closed down, and whether or not our Bicentennial Pageant had been financially profitable, most of us didn't care, for we were going home with a memory that will never again be experienced. I think that the committee that engineered the show deserves credit, for it consisted of Elmer Lapp as Co-Chairman, with Ed Margerum, Ira Hall, Roger Kreibel, Robert Montgomery, and Paul Seachrist. Thanks should also go to Amos Stauffer who promised us the wheat would be ready to thresh if he had to grow it in his own back yard!

With the Bicentennial show over, it seemed no time at all before we were preparing for the Thresherman's Reunion. Much was in readiness from the former affair, but some preparations were still needed. This year Larry's roller didn't look quite so sad and forlorn for with Frank V's extra pair of hands, we had some nice bright paint on it.

Last year in my report, I stated that I had neglected to mention the operational steam traction engines, so, using the list of our honorable M.C., Mr. W. Eshleman, they were as follows:

Parade No.

1. Frick. 1921. 9 x 10 Harry Bechtol.
2. Peerless. 1903. 12 HP Titus Brubaker, Sr.
3. Avery. 1911. 25 HP Rough & Rumble.
4. Peerless. 1928. 50 HP Clarence Wile.
5. Peerless. 1923. 50 HP George Derr.
6. Kitten, 1923. 24 HP Paul Stoltzfus
7. Case. 1917. 40 HP Sam Kriebel.
8. Frick. 1923.50 HP Martin Weaver
9. Frick. 1924.65 HP Martin Weaver
10. Peerless. 1924. 50 HP Sherd Doughman.
11. Frick. 1916. 9'/2 x 10 E. C. Nafe.
12. Frick. 1916. 6% x 9. Leroy Schannauer.
13. Home-made. 3x4. Leroy Schannauer, Jr.
14. Peerless. 1905. 18 HP J. Fred Lawton.
15. Buffalo Springfield Roller. 1921. George Gaunt.
16. Farquhar. 189?. 12 HP Robert Lefever.
17. Huber. 1916. 16 HP Paul Stoltzfus.
18. Huber. 1918. 20 HP Paul Stoltzfus.
19. Port Huron. 1922. 65 HP - Paul Hahn.
20. Frick. 1923.9 x 10 Bill Lucabauch
21. Scheidler. 1886. 8 x 10 Titus Brubaker, Sr.
22. Case. 1894. 12 HP Jim Geger.

This list does not cover all the large units, only those that participated in the evening parades. As for the gas tractors, I'm sorry boys, for with such a long list we would only give Gerry Lestz a problem.

The British terminology for a firewords display is a Guy Fawkes night, referring, of course, to the anarchist who tried to blow up the Houses of Parliament. Well, Paul Stoltzfus is no anarchist, but he certainly knows how to put on such a display. After dark the large Huber was belted to the Baker fan, opened up and fed sawdust. What a show, for sparks shot a 100 feet or more into the air, then gently drifted down to earth like a host of a million fire flies. Quite an audience gathered around the engine and cars up on the highway began to slow down. I'll bet many of them were witnessing their first steam fireworks display without realizing it. Next time Paul, maybe you should get some metal filings and see if you can make colors.

I did get down to see the old tractor pull, or should I say, what was left of it. I was in time to see Leroy Ebersol and Titus Brubaker, Jr. compete with large cross motor Cases, with John Railing coming along last. I felt sure Johnny was going to win but Leroy beat them by just a few feet. Earlier I was told that steam also 'had a go' at the sled. I would have enjoyed seeing this but was tied up in the model building. A slow race was another feature, and I heard that the Avery won. No wonder, with its two simple cylinders.

Having two shows to report this year, I must shorten this reunion summary and briefly go over the highlights remaining.

We had quite a line of gas engines again this year and in future I'm asking Paul Seachrist if we can take our dirty clothes down there, for those old Maytags were making plenty of suds. Plenty of tractors, and the Shay Railroad had a bit more track this year. I was informed that they succeeded in cutting off someone's tent rope.

Model section was full again, both inside and out, and all of the Birmingham Dribblers were sold by Friday evening. Had a Hula dancer horse on my model carousel and Margaret Mathews said a grass skirt would be in order. Didn't get one though, thought the horse might eat it anyhow.

Must mention the large Watts and Campbell 20 x 48 Corliss engine that the boys had running for the first time. All the men that pulled a wrench on this 'baby' had to know their stuff, and the coterie consisted of Dan Brubaker, President, Harry Frey, Roy Herr, Paul Stoltzfus, Charlie Landis, Otis Astle, Bob Hartzell, Ed Margerum, John Railing, Bob Montgomery, Paul Krum, Melvin Conrad, with Amos Stauffer supplying the transportation. One man that needs much credit in procuring this machine from the Federal Paper Company was Mr. John B. Kurtz, now deceased. It is sad that he did not vision the fruits of his efforts.

So I conclude another report, trusting again that no one or no prominent incident has been omitted. Trust that all enjoyed the programs we had to offer, and please, come again next year.