939 Eighth Street, Beloit, Wisconsin
I haven't been a subscriber for the ALBUM too long, but I
get a lot of enjoyment reading it. When I get one issue, I read it
from front to back the first evening and about three days later, I
read it from back to front! I can appreciate the work that is
involved in compiling the material for each issue. You are doing a
good job. Now if you will allow me to blow off a little steam about
myself and the photo of the 24 hp Minneapolis . . .
That is me with my long forehead standing by the engine. Being
only 42 years old, I can't offer much experience as far as
threshing is concerned, but I did get in some at the last of the
1930's. I ran a 24 hp Minneapolis quite a bit. The last that I
pulled a throttle on a traction engine was 1939. I have been around
steam power all of my life and I was chief engineer for a 10,000
K.W. steam turbine electric plant for eight years.
Last Labor Day week-end, the Pulton Congregational Church held
their 3rd Rock River Thresheree at Edgerton, Wisconsin for three
days. So, on Saturday afternoon, I drove up to Edgerton to see what
went on. As I drove the car into the parking area, someone pulled a
whistle cord and my enthusiasm began to rise as I could hear an
engine working in a belt. When I got to the area where the engines
were, about the first engine that took my eye was the 24 hp
I wasn't around too long on Saturday, but I was back on
Sunday by 8 a.m. and got acquainted with the owner of the
Minneapolis engine -Mr. Walter Kienow of Randolph, Wis. He
purchased this engine in the fall of 1959 and he did a wonderful
job of restoring the engine. It ran fine. He had it all painted and
trimmed up like a new one. He was very generous and let me run the
engine quite a bit.
The first thing we did in the morning after steam was up, was to
hook to a Red River Special Separator and spotted it alongside a
stack of grain. As I was as 'rusty as a hinge on an old
gate', that proved to be a chore and a sore arm resulted from
cranking. Later in the day we belted up to the fan to work the
Before lunch, there were four brothers drove up from down around
Pontiac, Illinois, and they were the McCasky boys. Their father was
the first owner of the same engine which was purchased in 1924. Mr.
Keinow let the boys run the engine and you could tell by their talk
and admiration for the engine that it brought back a lot of
The way that I have been popping my safety you would think that
this was all of the activity at the Thresheree, but I can assure
you it wasn't.
I would say there were about twelve steamers, Cases, Jumbo,
Advances, four or five large gas tractors, sawmill, fan,
teeter-totter, and they had steam plowing and an old hand-feed
separator that was in good operating condition. They had a number
of scale model steamers. Those people involved in putting on the
event deserve a lot of credit.
The fact that I live in a city of 35,000 prevents me from having
a large engine to work on or store, so I would be satisfied with a
working model 3' scale of ' scale. I am preparing a shop in
my 2-car garage. I have already acquired an engine lathe 14'
swing 5' between centers, a No.2 Milwaukee K & T milling
machine, so by the time this gets in the ALBUM I will be started on
a model engine. Some of you readers will say 'What will the
little woman have to say when you spend too much time in the
shop?' Well, Mrs. Beedy is a ceramist. She has ceramics all
over the house and she has all the necessary equipment to pursue
her hobby in the basement - so we'll both be busy!