A True Old-Time Threshing Story

| March/April 1991

  • Ohio hay press

  • Yost's Russell engine
    #1: ''Son'' Yost's Russell engine and 1896 Ohio hay press, pre 1930s.

  • Ohio hay press
  • Yost's Russell engine

Route 1, Box 332 Adena, Ohio 43901

Charles 'Son' Yost was an old time thresherman from way back. In 1896, he purchased a new Ohio Cultivator hay press pictured in the two photos accompanying this story. Later he purchased a Russell steamer and a hand-fed Russell thresher and still later a Rumely Oil Pull. He had a run around Harrisonville, Ohio, until the 1930 depression when he borrowed $50.00 from the bank against the baler and was unable to pay it back.

This is where my dad, Edgar Flowers, came into the story. He bought the Ohio hay press from the bank. Picture #1 shows Son on his Russell engine, hooked to the Ohio hay press and the baling crew at an unidentified barn near Harrisonville, Ohio. Note the wooden wheels on the hay press. Picture #2 shows the hay press in 1990 with my dad standing beside it. Note: steel wheels.

During the 1930's, my dad bought the second Ohio hay press, a later model, for $14.00. This press was borrowed from Ben Coleman by Son and he was to buy it from him. My dad bought a new Avery 28' thresher for the 1929 huge wheat crop. Son was to bale behind him. Son 'made the brag' that he never saw a separator that he couldn't keep up to with his baler. He found one. He increased the speed so much that the hay press blew up.

With the two balers, a machinist from Cadiz, Ohio, took the two apart and used the best gears and the wagon to make the Yost baler in good condition. My dad used the Ohio press until 1950 when he bought a new John Deere wire tie baler.

I remember Son Yost as an 'old cronie' up at Giffens Ice Cream store telling stories. As a kid, I was all ears.


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