Case Equipment Featured at Steam Power Show


| January/February 1976

  • Steam Power Show

  • 80 HP Case steam engine

  • Water storage tank
    This is a picture of a 1915 Cypress wooded overhead water storage tank, being re-set in July of 1975 at its new location at Hedtke's Hickory-Oaks Farm. Its capacity when full is approximately 4,000 gallons. The tank was built by the Stover Plant, Freeport
    Emil F
  • Golden grain
    George Hedtke, President of North Central Illinois Steam Power Show, greeting Ethel Hardesty of Oregon, Illinois, the 1975 Threshing Bee Queen t Hickory-Oaks Farm. Mrs. Hardesty, dressed in an old fashioned gown, was holding a small bundle of golden grain
    Emil F
  • 80 HP Case engine
    Pictured here is three year old Daniel Schwartz, standing in the smoke box of George Hedtke's 80 HP Case steam engine which was delivered to Hickory-Oaks Farm that day. He is the son of Jon and Marilyn Schwartz of Rockford, Illinois. Burp is a nickname fo
    Emil F

  • Steam Power Show
  • 80 HP Case steam engine
  • Water storage tank
  • Golden grain
  • 80 HP Case engine

North Central Illinois Steam Power Show, Box 111, Davis Junction, Ill. 61020

Reprinted from the Case Mark September 1975, Gabriella S. Birkholtz, Editor

Steam engine whistles blare through the country air. Steam and Smoke pour from late 19th and early 20th century machines. Horses plow the ground. Oats are fed into an 1889 Case Agitator Thresher. You are carried back into the agricultural history as you visit one of the numerous old time thresherees held throughout the nation in late summer.

The North Central Illinois Steam Power Show in Ogle County, south of Rockford, is just such an event. It's a lesson in agricultural and J.I. Case Company history. It's an opportunity for old timers, who remember the days of community thresherees to get the grain harvested, to reminisce and to operate some of the equipment their fathers and grandfathers used back in the days of farm homesteading. It's an opportunity for city folks to get out in the country and learn something about farming years ago. And it is an opportunity for machinery buffs to see some of the old-time equipment in actual use.



The man behind the North Central Illinois Steam Power Show, which runs for four days each August and attracts an estimated 20,000 visitors, is 52 year-old George W. Hedtke, an electrician by vocation and a steam engine authority by avocation.

Hedtke has owned the 45-acre show site, Hickory-Oaks, since 1971. The show, which has nearly 20-year history, was held there for the first time last year. On the land are several old buildings which Hedtke has moved from other locations for a small frontier village. The only modern structure is a large 60'x144' metal barn, in which Hedtke houses his numerous antique machines, and which is converted to an area for various displays, as well as a dining room, during the yearly Steam Power Show. Hedtke and his collie, Casey, will move to Hickory-Oaks as soon as a well is drilled.