| April 2003


George H. ArcherA water pump

While reading the letters to the editor in the Farm Collector February 2003 issue, I was somewhat amazed to find the letter from Mr. Herman Calvert. The letter contains a piece of misinformation that may mislead farm tool collectors. He states, 'the unusual thing about Weir plows is that they were made right handed at a time when all other plows were left handed. Right-hand plows didn't come out until the tractor plow.'

This statement is not correct. Virtually all plow companies (I have catalogs for several dozen dating back to the 1800s), made plows in both left- and right-hand versions. In 1910, the Oliver plow catalog offers almost all of its models in both right- and left-hand versions. Preference determined which was bought.

In general, it can be said that left-handed plows were preferred east of the Mississippi, and right-handed ones to the west. The same is true of wood or steel beam plows, both were made side by side to the very end of walking plow production. Some people think that a steel beam plow is newer than a wood beam, it's not necessarily so. I just wanted to set the record straight.

- Alan C King, 204 Westwood Ave., Delaware, OH 43015

Right-hand is 'right' too

As a long-time collector of walking plows and other primitive horse-drawn farm equipment, a letter in the (Farm Collector, February 2003) issue was misleading in regards to the right-handed plow not coming out until the tractor plow.

In my research, I find the wood mold-board plows were mostly right handed. In 1797, Charles Newbold's patent in the U.S. was for a right-handed cast plow. In 1819, Woods patented a plow with replaceable cast shear and cast moldboards that were right handed.