Abe Warner, Columbia, Pa. borough mechanic, shows off his Buffalo-Springfield steam roller for the Columbia News photographer. Photo appeared on News front page and is supplied gratis by the newspaper.
Abe Warner was driving along between Hanover and Gettysburg, Pa., 28 years ago when he saw a steam roller in solitary splendor at 'Bunnyville' (it's French town name Bonneauville).
'I had to cut a tree 6 inches in diameter to get it out,' he recalls. 'I paid the owner $800 and was later offered $3,000. We towed it behind a truck right through the main square in York, Pa., to bring it to my home at Washington Boro.'
The roller is a Buffalo Springfield, 1908, twin cylinder, weighing 10 tons.
Abe made the front page of the Columbia (Pa.) News in June, when he used his giant 'toy' to roll the parking lot of the Susquehanna Fire Company. It took him about two hours to drive the roller from Washington Boro to Columbiaa distance of a few miles.
Abe was told the engine originally came from Potter County, Pa. He put tubes in it, and fashioned a smokestack from a stainless steel heater tank. He put tubes in it, and fashioned a smokestack from a stainless steel heater tank. He keeps it outside in his backyard. After he did the job for the fire volunteers at the Susquehanna company, he got a request to put it on display at the lot of the No. 1 Fire Company.
A member of Williams Grove, he had the roller there for a number of years and attends the show annually.
Warner also has an old portable Farquhar, made in York, which he keeps at Williams Grove. He is a Columbia borough mechanic.
His wife, Betty Jane, learned how to be an engine operator from him and often shows her skill at Williams Grove.