Content Tools

Noel, Missouri 64854

Steam engine shows have a large variety of steam engines, threshers, old heavy type tractors, saw-mills and many other ancient antiquated items of historical value, used by the early day pioneer settlers, in their enterprising pursuit to eke out a living and to build up our country into a great agricultural nation.

Some shows are very large, having many historical items on display. Others are quite small, displaying only a few items. Of all the shows that I have been privileged to attend, the Pioneer Harvest Fiesta, steam engine show in Fort Scott, Kansas, a medium sized show is outstanding for displaying a large variety of interesting and unusual historical items. In addition, a visit to Old Fort Scott, a national shrine, with its rare and unique collection of ancient relics, and The National Cemetery, makes these three attractions most interesting, outstanding and a gratifying treat that every person should see.

Fort Scott, Kansas, with the Burbon County fair grounds ideally located at the southwest corner of the city limits, has, and always will, extend a friendly hand of welcome to all show visitors. It is blessed with many tourist courts and fine eating places.

The Bourbon County Fair grounds, the home of the Pioneer Harvest Fiesta, steam engine show, where the ancient meets the present, has ample parking area immediately adjacent to the show grounds. Only a few steps to walk. There are dining rooms for old time thresher-men meals, lunch stands for sandwiches, cotton candy, cones and cold drinks, and plenty free ice-water on the grounds. Also many places for picnic lunches.

The board of directors of the Pioneer Harvest Fiesta are very strict with all engine operators, demanding that they hold the steam to three-fourths of the allowable pressure, to make theirs a safe and sane show to attend. Careless and reckless operators are instantly removed from an engine. Tug-O-War is outlawed. All engines have been inspected.

The following items were on display, in the 1966 show. 12 original steam engines, 21 original old tractors, 14 threshers, 50 gasoline engines, 4 light plants, one 4 hole shelter, one shredder, one Papec insilage cutter, one saw-mill, one baker type fan, one bale-tie making machine, and many other small items. Plenty of action at all times.

Note- the National Cemetery referred to in the article is one of the original fourteen national cemeteries established by the United States in the fall of 1862 and is designated National Cemetery No. l.

There are now 1700 veterans from all American wars buried in this cemetery. About twenty of these are graves of Indian Scouts for the American forces. I had time only to cover a part of the cemetery and found the following names- Stick-Out-Belly, Set-Them-Up, Young Chicken and Deep-In-Water. Each of these four stones carry the abbreviation Ind. Ter. (Indian Territory)

Most of the 1700 Veterans buried in this cemetery are from the central and eastern states, and it is possible that many of these are distant relatives of those regular attendants of today's shows.

The star was so beautiful, large and clear, That all the other stars of the sky Became a white mist in the atmosphere.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow