Introducing "Mr. REO" and His REO Mower Collection

Ohio man known for his passion for REO mowers and memorabilia.

| April 2016

All collectors have that special brand name or model or type of item that we seek out, and we’ll go to great lengths to put our hands on a piece that fits our collection. Denny Schimmoeller – or “Mr. REO,” as many of his friends know him – is no exception.

Denny, who lives in Delphos, Ohio, is an avid collector of REO lawn and garden equipment and memorabilia. His REO collection started more than 10 years ago, when he bought a 1951 REO Royale De Luxe at an auction. For $2, he got a mower in need of restoration – and the original packet containing instructions and a manual.

After that, he began scouring the Internet for information on REO. And that led to additions to his collection. “I started buying various models REO built over the years,” he says, “and I also began buying REO memorabilia, mostly magazine ads and sales brochures.”

Denny’s daughters had the magazine ads framed for him as a Christmas gift, and then things really took off. “I started thinking it’d be neat to make a display of memorabilia to take to engine shows,” he says. “With my daughters’ help, we laminated photocopies of the ads and put them on a display board.”

Display showcases unique line

That display board creates a colorful and informative backdrop for his display, which includes Denny’s favorite REO piece: a 1953 REO Trollabout inboard trolling motor kit used to convert a rowboat to an inboard-powered craft.

His friend Doug Tallman discovered the NOS kit (still in its original REO packaging) when the two collectors were looking for a tire for Doug’s Shaw tractor at a swap meet. “I was very excited by that find,” Denny says. “It’s the pride of my collection.”