Minneapolis Steam Engine Ready for Close-Up

1920 Minneapolis steam engine has star status


| December 2000


Trace the history of most antique steam engines, and you'll find a sawmill or farm. Dean Alling's 1920 20 hp Minneapolis steam engine has all of that, and a bit of glamour as well: it was featured in the 1956 film "Friendly Persuasion" with Gary Cooper and Dorothy McGuire. 

"The old steam guys who've been around a while, they always recognize it from the movie," Dean says.

The stint in Hollywood didn't do the Minneapolis steam engine any harm, but years of use on the farm and sawmill left the antique steam engine worn out. It was used at a sawmill in Wausau, Wis., into the early 1950s, and on a farm prior to that.

"If a steam engine has been used to plow, the gears are worn out, and if it's been used on a sawmill, the boiler's worn out," Dean says. "This one was just all worn out."

The steamer was acquired by a collector and moved to Oceanside, Calif., in 1955. It was used in parades and later parked at the Del Mar Park, where it sat for at least 10 years, the victim of benign neglect. In ensuing years, the Minneapolis steam engine went through a series of owners. It was torn apart for restoration, but the project never advanced beyond that point.

When Dean found it in 1995, it had been in a pile of pieces for 20 years.






SUBSCRIBE TO FARM COLLECTOR TODAY!

Farm Collector April 16Farm Collector is a monthly magazine focusing on antique tractors and all kinds of antique farm equipment. If it's old and from the farm, we're interested in it!

Save Even More Money with our SQUARE-DEAL Plan!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our SQUARE-DEAL automatic renewal savings plan. You'll get 12 issues of Farm Collector for only $24.95 (USA only).

Or, Bill Me Later and send me one year of Farm Collector for just $29.95.




Facebook Pinterest YouTube


Copyright 2018, All Rights Reserved
Ogden Publications, Inc., 1503 SW 42nd St., Topeka, Kansas 66609-1265