A Reminiscence

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Box 61 New Castle, Colorado 81647

I’m thinking of the days of my threshing with steam for the
farmers. Sleeping out under the stars at the straw stack, getting
up at 5 A.M. in the morning, starting a fire in the boiler, then to
the famer’s table for a good breakfast. Then back to the
machine to grease all of its working joints and starting the
day’s threshing at 7 A.M.

I think often now of those dear people they had no conveniences
then, we call them necessities now. The men would feed and harness
their team, hand milk their cows, feed their calves, and sometimes
drive with their teams and wagons for miles to start threshing at 7
A.M. and have a smile on their face when they got there.

I had owned two different steam rigs: A 36 horse J. I. Case
tandem compound engine and a 28-50 J. I. Case separator.

Then a 40 horse simple cylinder J. I. Case steam engine and a
28-46′ Red River Special separator. The farmers were required
to furnish the coal for their job. Then when the gasoline operated
machines started coming in the farmers started to complain about
hauling the coal. We had to change from steam to gasoline.

These were good machines, but so were the steam. And I dearly
loved the smell of steam, and to hear the steam whistle,
competition was keen. With other machines running I threshed grain
for the farmers for 20 more than 20 years.

After switching from steam to gasoline I had two threshing
machines running for about 17 years.

I have the greatest regard for our pioneers, when traveling some
of those roads, and seeing ditches they had built, without any of
our modern equipment today, I have to take my hat off to them.

I bought in 1938 and have the first privately owned bulldozer in
this community. No. A 4G3447 Caterpillar R-D-4 with Letourna
Bulldozer on it. I charged $3.50 per hour (everything
furnished).

That old Cat and I working 10 hour shifts is what sent and paid
for the kids’ going to college. After their return from the
U.S. Army in 1942 we went into state highway construction working
in Colorado, Utah and New Mexico mostly in the western slopes of
Colorado. I’m retired now, turned 82 years young in November.
Our three boys are still in construction but have their separate
companies. I still have a Case rig model L and 28 separator. But
that is in the past and how I loved it.

The good Lord has blessed the wife and me. We had 19
grandchildren and 20 great grandchildren and are really a close
family.

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