A Nutty Power Plant


| May/June 1971



Advance Rumely

The chimney made a DRAFT on the furnace through the BANK of grates, and when the coal ACCEPTED THE DRAFT the fire went FLUEY and the boiler GOT HOT. The steam gage PUT UP ITS HAND, but the gage-glass said, 'EVERYTHING SEEMS CLEAR TO ME,' while the water claimed to be the only one acting ON THE LEVEL. 'TRY US' said the three gage cocks just as the blow off OPENED UP ON THE QUESTION and then the safety valve called, 'Everybody listen to me; I'm going to BLOW MYSELF.' The rivets all shouted 'HOLD ON NOW, HOLD ON,' but the engine COMMENCED TO RUN and the flywheel STARTED A REVOLUTION.

'Don't come WITHIN A ROD OF ME, you old CROSSHEAD, called the piston. 'Well you QUIT YOUR PUSHING,' chimed in the cylinder; 'can't you see I'M BORED?' 'I hate being rushed about FROM PORT TO PORT by that ECCENTRIC guy,' complained the valve. 'Somebody ROUND HERE has got altogether too much BRASS,' complained the crankpin. 'FOR TWO PINS I'D KNOCK YOU SPINNING,' replied the connecting-rod. At that the governor, which had 'WEIGHTED' for an opportunity, MADE A LONG SPRING and managed to CUT-OFF the worst of the difficulty, but not before the engine was PRETTY WELL EXHAUSTED and the generator had become so EXCITED that it got all the rotors and lamps ON THE WIRE and gave them the CURRENT EVENTS. The lamps offered some RESISTANCE but MADE LIGHT of it, but the motors were easily INDUCED to TURN in with the REVOLUTION, which spread rapidly FROM POLE TO POLE.

Every SINGLE PHASE of this SHOCKING affair was PASSED ON by the BOARD OF SWITCHES, who decided that every member of the entire plant was more or less NUTS.

A letter sent us awhile back from FRED GERTJE, Orofino, Idaho 83544, goes like this:

'On page 10 of the March-April, Iron Men-Album there appears an article entitled 'Subject Genealogy.' For some little time I have been wanting to write such an item, in hope that you might see fit to use it.

'In 1970 my Grandfather and Grandmother Gertje and my father and Uncle John came to America from Oldenberg province in Germany. They spent one winter in New York City, where Grandfather operated a water driven elevator, and the following summer they moved to Minnesota; I think at Mankato or Faribault, later moving to one of the Dakotas, wherever Millbank is located. When Grandfather came through Ellis Island port of immigration, his surname was much longer, and was changed by the immigration authorities. Grand Uncle Christian, Grandfather's brother, had come to America some time previous, and apparently was living in Minnesota, but used his surname as it was in Germany. In 1883 my father came to Uniontown, Wash., having worked his way across Montana. A year or so later my Grandfather came to Kendrick, Idaho, and located in the Leland-Cameron area south of Kendrick. My grandparents brought six sons and two daughters West, and lost some in a diphtheria epidemic in Dakota. I know our clan is small, and I would greatly appreciate it if any Stemgas fan might know the name and address of any person who uses a surname spelled the same as mine. My Grandfather was a steam thresherman, and I have a picture of his outfit threshing at Leland.'