WHERE ARE THE ENGINES?

Universal Advance Rumeley engine

The Universal Advance Rumeley engine owned by Frank Sylla of Whitehall, Wisconsin.

Content Tools

Collectors keep responding to tell us where the engines are, and we now have more notes and photos than we can use in several issues. Yet we want you to keep those answers coming! We should soon have enough for the next booklet with the title, WHERE ARE THE ENGINES?

Here are two to tell you about...

Frank A. Sylla, of 2040 Lou Blvd., Whitehall, Wisconsin 54733, has a Universal Advance Rumeley with an interesting story. It has an 11 inch stroke.

The engine was purchased new in 1923 by a party in Arcadia, Wiscon sin, threshed a couple of years, and repossessed by a bank in Blair, Wisconsin. Then it was bought by Able Knuton, threshed a couple years, and sold to a private tie mill operator. It was a man and wife operation; she fired the engine and he was the sawyer. A small operator, when his woodlot became depleted he sold the engine to a collector of Mondovi, Wisconsin, named George Loomis. It had been wintered on his land.

'I have no number on it,' Sylla writes, 'as creosote has destroyed the figures.' It was fired up at night to keep the boiler warm; green slabs were used and the stack was covered.

'The engine is original as it came from the factory,' Sylla notes. 'It has a gear lubricator, marsh pump, two whistles and one injector. I had it reflued in 1982 by a licensed boiler mechanic.

'I am 81 years old and still enjoy firing up, but it's hard work.' Since he is disabled, Sylla does not know how long he can stay active with the engine.

Joseph G. Galbreath, of 2404 B 12th Ave., Sterling, Illinois 61081, has a 1909 Case, J. I. Case 9 HP engine, serial #21693. He bought it from the estate of Guy McCausland of Folletts, Iowa, in December, 1982. He had purchased it from the estate of Justin Hingtgen of LaMotte, Iowa. Galbreath writes:

'The story I got was that several years ago, probably the early 1950's, the Hingtgens were traveling in Montana. Mrs. Hingtgen took ill and had to go to a hospital for surgery. While she was recuperating, Justin was scouting the area for engines, as he was prone to do. He found my engine high up on a mountain and tried to locate the owner. The engine seemingly didn't have a real owner, so he hired a bulldozer to build a road down the mountainside. He then trucked the engine down and to his farm west of LaMotte. I have been unable to find anyone to substantiate or refute this story, but it is an interesting tale.

'The engine is in very good condition and is Iowa certified to operate at 100 psi. We store it in our shed at Kirkwood, Illinois, and it is shown at Mt. Pleasant, Iowa, each year at the Midwest Old Settlers and Threshers annual reunion.'

Thorval Throndson's uncle Tom and his outfit stack threshing near Benson, Minnesota, sometime in the 1880's. The engine is a Giant, the separator a Northwest, made by Northwest Thresher Co.