| March/April 1977

  • Steam traction engine
    Port Huron steam traction engine owned by Skip Dufour, 708 John Ave., Wells, Michigan. That's Clarence Sherman at the throttle.

  • Steam traction engine

510 N. 21st. Street, Escanaba, MI49829.

Wish you could all have been to the First Annual Show of the Upper Peninsula Steam and Gas Engine Association Inc. at the U.P. State Fairgrounds in Escanaba, Michigan.

The morning of September 18 dawned partly cloudy to the relief of Skip Dufour and myself. (We signed the note at the bank for $800 to finance the show). I was at church about 9 A.M. when Pastor Howell came in and said the fellows over at the fairgrounds were getting steam up and things were starting to move. (I understand Skip Dufour and Clarence Sherman started firing up the steam engines at 6 A.M. with wet wood. Was Sherm ever excited!) By 5 P.M. 250 (paid) people had come in and favorable reports had come from all of them. One man stopped by on his way back from a large show in Minnesota and said we had better equipment than they did! Not as much, but older and better restored. Several people wanted to join the Association, a few wanted to buy or sell, or ask for advice about tractors or engines they owned.

Threshing went well (oats) with our 22' Bell City thresher operated by Skip's superb Port Huron steam traction engine. Terry Alexander's G.P. John Deere pulled the thresher well too, but really barked when the fellows laid the bundles in end to end.

Allen Dill kept the people entertained with his early Fairmont, People had a hard time understanding how it ran either way. Al Strahl kept the engines on 'Gasoline Alley' gassed, oiled, and running. My Novo is set to run about 200 RPM and one fellow just sat down and watched it. He just couldn't believe the thing wasn't going to stop.

Dave Housman took off with my Farmall Regular like someone was after him with a torch and found that the steering doesn't work when the gear falls off the shaft. He got control of the thing though and after some searching found the small gear in the grass and he fastened it solidly this time.


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