R. 1, Milton, Iowa
If not too late, could you please find space in the July-August issue of THE IRON-MEN ALBUM for this news item?
For some time now, the restoration and preservation of the old time Single Cylinder Gasoline Engines and the Early Tractors have claimed the attention of many of the younger generation of collectors as well as some of the older members of various steam engine associations. It was with this idea in view that John M. Achey and Dale M. Perrill took time out and brought about the forming of what is now known as the 'Middle States Early Gas Engine and Tractor Association'. About in with the days of the steam traction engine the one cylinder gasoline engine with its two fly-wheels was a familiar sight and sound on many an American farm In fact, many were the times this writer eased the steam into the cylinders of a steam traction engine, said steam being evaporated from water pumped by these faithful if sometimes aggravating but handy little engines when the wind failed to turn the wind-mill.
Like our beloved steam engines, these gasoline engines and the pioneer internal combustion tractors are all but gone from the farm and field as well as their associate belt driven machinery from the household belt driven churns and washing machines to other small power tools as used in the by-gone days. As much as we all hold the majestic steam engine in highest esteem from fond recollections, especially those of us who were associated with them, there still seems to be some who frown on the preservation of the internal combustion tractor as in their somewhat narrow minded view they regard these tractors as the means that brought about the passing of the steam engine. This writer will not argue that matter pro or con; even if there was any truth in that idea. But will say the early day internal combustion tractor enjoyed even a shorter popularity that the steam engine did before it in turn was discarded in favor of the more modern row-crop tractor we now have before us. Even this has undergone many changes in more ways than one during the last decade. Noticing already wherever power is available, the electric motor has nosed out the internal combustion type of engine in the march of progress. Therefore, let us not blame one type of power or another which after all is said, is no more important to the average person than the age-old question of whether the 'hen or the egg was first'. But let us organize and save what may still be saved for posterity of all types of these wonderful machines of days gone by before all vanish from the scene.
This is the purpose of the 'Middle-States Early Gas Engine and Tractor Association' which, though as yet not completely organized as necessarily all work so far has been done entirely by mail. After the name was suggested and chosen by ballot, the officers were elected and other matters were arrived at the same way. The officers are, John H. Achley, Box 447, Dresser, Wisconsin, president; Wendell Fertig, R. 2, Box 14, Lamed, Kansas, vice-president; F. L. Williams, The Oaks, Cordova, Ill., asst., vice-president; Alden R. Moural, R. 1, Milton, Iowa, secretary; and Dale M. Perrill, 5080 Winkler Mill Road, Rochester, Michigan, treasurer. Any one owning an internal combustion engine or tractor of 20 years or older, any type steam engine, other early day non-automotive machinery, is invited to join the group by paying a $1.50 fee for annual dues and $5.00 for a year's subscription for the 'Engineers and Engines', if not already a subscriber, as this paper was chosen as the official organ of the association. For further particulars as of now available write the secretary or any of the other officers as space prohibits further details.