How Do I Run The Darn Thing?

Route 1, Box 54, Princeton, Wisconsin 54968

One can almost hear a prospective thresherman saying, ‘Now
that I own it, how do I run the darn thing?’ Not all who
purchased threshing machinery were this naive. In fact, many were
very sophisticated mechanics and engineers. A large number of these
learned at the knee, so to speak, of a neighbor, uncle, brother or
father. A few were out on their own while still in their teens.

Jim Rabas Sr. purchased his first 75 HP Minneapolis engine and
separator when only 17 years of age1. Ernest Danielson
reported, ‘I started threshing when I was sixteen years of age.
It was hard for Dad to get help, so Dad put me to hauling water for
the steam engine. I hauled water for two years, then Dad put me to
running the engine.2 Likewise Victor Gallagher learned
from his father. He claimed to have always been a threshing and
steam enthusiast. ‘I started by helping my father, Frank
Gallagher, run his 32 x 56 Huber Superior separator and 20 HP
double cylinder Reeves (1919) when I was about 15 or 16 years
old.’3 Orville Hendricks began firing a
Keck-Gonnerman engine when only eight, which prompted his mother to
remark that he cut his teeth on the draw bar. About the same time
he tended the blower. Soon he was elevated to water boy, a job that
he recalled nearly killed him. One day the regular engineer did not
show up for work and Orville took over although he was only
fourteen. He admitted, ‘I had to lie a little bit, but I got a
steam operator’s license when I was

In a recent letter, John Steinkuhl of Evansville, Indiana
related how he learned to operate a steam engine. ‘Better than
a book or pamphlet is directly working with the engineer. We three
Steinkuhl brothers, George, Pat and John, were mechanically
inclined. North of Darmstadt and Evansville, Indiana and in Gibson
County, at the age of 17 years, Joe Broerman had me start hauling
water. I helped with the engine and at times Broerman let me run it
with his supervision during the whole threshing season. This is how
I pretty well learned the procedure. Afterwards my brother George
bought an 18 HP Keck-Gonnerman from Charles Bossee. By this time I
knew enough about running the engine, and shredded corn at

There were those who possessed insufficient knowledge to manage
the machinery they had purchased, and they did not have someone at
hand to teach them. Into this category fell those who had been
enamored by the sight, sound and fury of the threshing scene, and
who as a consequence became easy targets for accomplished salesmen.
Perhaps it happened at a county fair where the beauty of the beast
and the thought of the prestige of ownership overwhelmed otherwise
sensible persons. Some of these men wound up with a new or used
rig, probably a mortgage on their real property and a series of
notes running as long as three years at six percent interest, or
more. Only after their name was on the dotted line did many realize
that they did not know how to run a steam engine or a grain

There were several sources of help. By using a combination of
these there was no reason why one could not become a successful

The sales representative of the manufacturing concern was one
such source. Most likely he would come by after delivery to
instruct the purchaser in the finer points of engineering and
separator management. In addition, at the time of the sale, the
thresherman probably received a manual that he was supposed to
study most diligently.

The nature of these manuals apparently varied greatly. Some were
quite brief. On the other hand, The Case Steam Engine Manual
(copyrighted in 1899, 1911, 1915, and 1922) ran 69 pages and
encompassed such subjects as fitting up and starting a new engine,
feed water, firing, lubricating and adjusting bearings, handling
the engine, the valve gear, the boiler, traction gearing and a
special section on the compound engine. This manual is still read
by those devoted to the steam hobby.

Case also distributed James H. Stephenson’s Farm Engines and
How to Run Them: The Science of Successful Threshing.6
This book went beyond the aforementioned in as much as it had a
section on how to operate a separator.

Around 1923 Advance-Rumely published Instructions For Operating
The Rumely Ideal Separator No. 23: Directions For Setting Up and
Operating the Rumely Ideal Separator. This readable manual of about
50 pages provided instructions on such matters as unloading the
separator from a railroad car, setting and starting the separator,
general adjustment of sieves, belting, taking care of the machine
and a section on how to handle a threshing crew. Among the most
interesting sections is the one on adjusting sieves, which
addresses the problem of dry brittle straw as in semi-arid parts of
the country. ‘This condition is very hard to overcome as the
straw cuts up in the cylinder and sifts down through the grates and
openings in the straw racks, loading the chaffer and making it
difficult to get the grain through and tends to carry it
over.” To correct this the cylinder speed was reduced as
much as possible but still thresh out the kernels. After suggesting
speeds for particular separators it noted that, ‘It will help
to uncouple the lifting fingers and tie them down, or some sets of
lifting fingers may be uncoupled. It will also help to nail strips
lengthwise on the upper side of the straw rack thus making the
racks finer.’ These recommendations were followed by several
paragraphs on threshing oats, barley, rye, red top grass, timothy,
flax and broom grass.

The section on handling the threshing crew held numerous
practical suggestions. The spike pitchers were to pull the drawbar
pin as soon as the separator was leveled and then set up the feeder
carrier. By this time the engineer should have the engine lined up.
While this was taking place the separator man should turn the wind
stacker into position and reset the weigher. Finally, the spike
pitchers should place a canvas beneath the front of the separator
to catch any grain that might fall. Those in charge of the grain
wagon were expected to block the wheels to prevent the team from
backing it into the machine.

While Case and Advance-Rumely supplied their customers with
rather extensive manuals, some companies did not. Keck-Gonnerman
(c.1925) sent out only about six pages, four on operating the
engine, one on the thresher and a half page of ‘Directions For
Operating U.S. Injectors.’ Even if one had memorized every word
in this short manual it is highly unlikely he would have qualified
as an expert thresherman. So, where else might a diligent student

First, there was the company representative who could be called
upon in a pinch. But often the factory or district branch office
was hundreds of miles away. In that case one might turn to a local
person who owned and operated threshing machinery, and had earned a
reputation for his ex-pertness. Herman Menke of Elberfeld, Indiana
was such a man. So was the late Roy Boatman who lived in the
Lawrenceville, Illinois area. Once Roy received a frantic call from
the owner of a double cylinder engine who could not keep up steam.
Upon arrival, he asked the engineer to start the engine.
Immediately it was apparent that only one cylinder was functioning.
Roy told the engineer to stop the engine and opened the smoke door.
He found that one exhaust pipe had fallen down and was exhausting
back through the flues. Roy tied up the pipe with some baling wire
and the engine worked perfectly.

Still another source was magazines. One could subscribe to The
Threshermen’s Review, The Canadian Thresherman or The American
Thresherman. Probably the best known journal of the period was The
American Thresherman, copies of which are still available in
several libraries. It ran a question and answer department under
the editorship of Professor P.S. Rose. Questions were solicited
from thresher-men, from young men starting out, old men who had
spent practically a lifetime in threshing, even representatives
from great threshing houses. Men from all sections of the country
not only wrote in, they awaited answers to most every question
imaginable. Subsequently these were published in booklet form as
Traction Engine Troubles.7 In 1960 it was republished by
The Iron Men Album.8

Moreover The American Thresherman, between August 1906 and
September 1916, provided over a hundred lessons covering first the
steam engine, then the grain separator and finally the gas engine.
Professor P.S. Rose of the North Dakota Agricultural College had
prepared these lessons for his lectures to farm engineering
students. In 1982 the Stemgas Publishing Company of Lancaster,
Pennsylvania reprinted that portion of the lessons pertaining to
the steam traction engine.9

Rose may well have been the most influential academic figure in
the history of steam traction engineering. He was born on July 13,
1872 in Allendale Center, Michigan, and as a youth he took a
man’s place on the crosscut saw and was known as a
‘seasoned ox teamster.’ He had a sketchy elementary
education and attended high school for only 12 weeks, but he was
intelligent and determined and he persuaded Michigan State
University to admit him. Here he cleared up his educational
deficiencies and went on to earn a degree in mechanical engineering
when he was 27 years old.

He began teaching at the North Dakota Agricultural College in
1900. In 1909 he became associate editor of The American
Threshermen and editor of Gas Review. Eventually he was made editor
of that popular magazine, The Country Gentleman. He was a charter
member of the American Society of Agricultural Engineers and was
the recipient of its prestigious Cyrus Hall McCormick Medal in
1939. An obituary in The Journal of the American Society of
Agricultural Engineers read in part: ‘During his editorial
career he emphasized the engineering side of farming. He campaigned
for soil erosion control and advocated lespedeza when there was not
a single acre of it in all America. He pointed his pen against some
of the scourges of human health when their names were hardly
whispered and saw their control become a national

Rose’s lessons, or Steam Engine Guide, covered such subjects
as power of steam, types of boilers, kinds of materials and boiler
details, boiler feeders and safety appliances, fuels, firing and
boiler horse power, types of engines, the plain slide valve,
traction engine reversing gearing, directions for setting the
valve, governors, lubricants and lubricators, gearing, belting, and
care of the engine. The reader will find this publication very
informative and equally sobering.

At the outset Rose wished to establish a due respect for the
power contained in a fully steamed traction engine boiler. He began
by stating that the boiler is that part of a steam engine that
‘gives the most trouble, the part that wears out first, and the
most dangerous part.’ He calculated that a 25 HP boiler at 150
pounds of pressure could, if all the power were applied as powder
in a rifle, shoot a ball weighing one pound vertically into the air
for a distance of approximately 7,500 miles. Yes! Miles! If the
same power were applied to the total weight of a 25 horse engine it
could lift it 1,735 feet or almost one third of a mile into the
air. Rose recognized that all beginners were nervous when working
about such power but when confidence arrived carelessness and even
recklessness sometimes accompanied it. He was equally aware of the
inefficiency of the steam traction engine which he judged lost 94
pounds out of every 100 pounds of coal because of heat radiation,
incomplete combustion, friction, and greatest of all, the heat that
escaped with the exhaust steam. He recognized that some gas engines
of the time showed under test 30 percent efficiency. Good
conservationist that he was, he warned, ‘Both, however, are
wasteful and are depleting the world’s fuel supply at an
alarming rate.’

In a few words, Rose’s Steam Engine Guide was intended as a
practical book for the men in the field.

The very year that Rose began his series of lessons, The
Threshermen’s Review issued G.F. Conner’s Science of
Threshing.11 It was well written and covered a range of
topics. One major advantage of the Conner book was that it dealt
with both the steam traction engine and the grain separator.
Undoubtedly some threshermen read and studied it during the
comparatively quiet winter months and took it along on the
summer’s run.

Beyond factory representatives, local experts, manuals, and
articles in magazines a number of books were published for those
who wished to become certified engineers, or who simply wanted to
expand their knowledge so that they could feel more comfortable
while at the same time running their rigs more efficiently and

Even before The American Thresherman began its question and
answer department or launched Rose’s series of lessons, a book
was published that, from a historical viewpoint, certainly was one
of the most significant ever published on the subject of operating
a steam traction engine. It was sometimes cited in subsequent
books, often quoted and occasionally plagiarized. The author
complained of the latter when he recalled reading a letter from
someone who said he did not believe in reading books on
engineering, and that all he knew he had learned in the field. To
prove what he knew the author of the letter had written on the
subject of the slide valve. But what really happened was that the
man ‘copied an article word for word that I had written in the
first edition of 9 Rough and Tumble.’12

Fortunately for steam fans, James H. Maggard’s Rough and
Tumble Engineering has just recently been republished by the Rough
and Tumble Engineers Historical Association of Kinzers,
Pennsylvania in honor of the 40th anniversary of the Association.
Maggard’s book is must reading for steam traction engineers. It
is simple, absorbing and informative. There are other works that
are more detailed and cover matters Maggard thought unnecessary to
treat, but none will hold one’s attention longer or cause one
to go back to it more frequently.

In the preface Maggard tells his readers that he had not written
a scientific work; instead he wrote a book intended ‘for
engineers of farm and traction engines, ‘rough and tumble
engineers’, who have everything in their favor today, and
tomorrow are in a mud hole.’ He cautioned his readers not to
conclude ‘that all you are to do is read this book. It will not
make an engineer of you. But read it carefully, use good judgement
and common sense, do as I tell you, and my word for it, in one
month, you, for all practical purposes, will be a better engineer
than four-fifths of the so-called engineers today, who think what
they don’t know would not make much of a book.’ Several
years later H.R. Tolley noted this same overconfidence and chided,
‘Manufacturers spend years in designing, building, and
experimenting with their machines, and their catalogs and
instruction books contain such information as applies to the
particular machine which they accompany. A great deal of the
trouble which threshermen experience is due to the fact that they
do not run their machines according to the printed instructions,
and in many cases when an expert is called in it is found that the
operator is either not acquainted with the instructions furnished
by the manufacturer or has disregarded them because he thought he
knew more about the machine than did the man who built

Returning to Maggard, he assumed that his readers would know as
much about engines as an ordinary water boy. If such a person read
his book and concluded that it was ‘no trick to run an
engine,’ in all probability that person was unqualified. But if
he were to say ‘It is no trouble to learn to run an
engine,’ then he was likely to become an engineer for he had
recognized that the principal thing was to attend to one’s own
business and leave the monkey wrench in the tool box until needed.
He knew that a bunch of waste in the hand was better than an
engineer’s license, and that common sense and a cool head were
the very best tools. Most of all he understood that carelessness
will get one into trouble, and to forget costs money.

Maggard advanced a few ideas not always shared by other writers.
He disagreed with those who thought a boiler should be blown out
under five or ten pounds of pressure. ‘Now if you must wait
till the boiler is cool before washing, why not let it cool with
the water in it?’ When the water was let out after it has
cooled within the boiler then, the moment you begin to force water
through it, you will see the dirty water flow out; if it had dried
on the inside of the boiler while you were waiting for it to cool,
you would find it very difficult to wash off.’

He was opposed to the fusible plug. He did not question the good
intentions of those states that required that every engine be
equipped with one. He did question, however the practice of warning
engineers never to permit the water to get too low, and then to say
in essence ‘there is something to even make this
allowable.’ It was like granting a license for

There is reason to believe that most editions of Maggard’s
book contained a series of questions and answers at the end. The
Rough and Tumble Engineers Historical Association, Inc. edition
also has a section based upon questions received from readers of
previous editions. This edition has a brief but very handy

Judging from citations in the literature and the fact that it
went through at least ten editions, William Boss’s Instructions
for Traction and Stationary Engineers must be ranked with
Maggard’s as one of the most influential publications in the
14 area of steam traction engineering. It provided
instructions, references, useful tables and rules and the usual
section on questions and answers for those seeking to pass an
examination in order to obtain a license.

Besides publishing his book on steam traction engineering, Boss
was granted 17 patents. Among these were a machine for planting a
predetermined number of seeds over a row of given length, a pot
thresher for measuring experimental yields and a germinating
machine for controlling temperature and humidity.15

The first few decades of the twentieth century witnessed the
release of many more pertinent publications, some of which are
still available to steam buffs and threshermen. For example, in
1916 S.R. Eighinger and Mancius Smedes Hutton published Steam
Traction Engineering.16 The authors divided their book
into seven chapters that ranged over the usual subject matter. But
there were specifics on which they differed from other writers.
They warned against the all too common practice of screwing down
the safety valve in order to obtain additional power and suggested
that it was sometimes advisable to have two safety valves, one set
to blow off at the designated pressure and the other set for three
to five pounds higher. Another item of difference was a recommended
‘blow off valve’ which would rid the boiler of the scum and
foam that rises to the surface when using some kinds of water. This
valve could be installed at the same height as the working level of
the water in the boiler and opened for a few moments several times
each day.

This book is at least three times as long as Maggard’s but
it is doubtful that one could find a more detailed description of
engine parts, sources of possible difficulties and breakdowns and
longer lists of possible solutions to these.

During World War II the United States Department of Agriculture,
voicing a concern for the waste of grain through ineffective
operation of threshing machinery, put out H.R. Tolley’s The
Efficient Operation of Threshing Machines.17 The loss of
grain, while not a serious problem for the individual farmer, was a
matter of millions of bushels to the nation as a whole and to the
nations that were in need of food to ward off famine. It was
pointed out that even the waste of a bushel a set would be an
enormous loss. No doubt, on the average, more than a bushel a set
was lost as farmers often complained about the grain they thought
went into the straw stack.18 Tolley’s little
Bulletin of about 15 pages could have been obtained at the time
through any county agent’s office or by writing to one’s
congressman. It covered such subjects as power and speed of
separators, belts and pulleys, journals and boxes, second hand
machines, the cylinder and concaves, feeding, cleaning the grain
and finishing up the job. Perhaps the most interesting of these is
the one on second hand machinery.

A second hand machine could be purchased for a small fraction of
a new one and it was often capable of considerable work, but it
probably would need to be gone over very carefully and put into
condition if it were to do good work, as a thresher-man who
disposed of his old machine probably had a good reason for doing
so. Tolley urged those who purchased a second hand machine to
obtain a manual on its operation from the seller or manufacturer,
as second hand machines sometimes gave trouble simply because the
owner had no representative of the manufacturer to explain its
workings or to instruct him in its operation.

Just as the United States Department of Agriculture published
material on threshing machines, so did the commercial publishing
houses. Two examples will make the point. In 1919 Farm Knowledge, a
several volume reference work came out. In volume 3, Farm
Implements and Construction, there is a chapter on steam engines.
But it is the editor’s note that precedes this chapter that is
worthy of notice from an historical standpoint. He claimed that by
1919 the most extensive use of steam on the American farm ‘is
probably in connection with heating greenhouses and the washing and
sterilization of d airy utensils, etc.’ He further observed
that although the steam engine still had its place the lighter and
more ‘easily fed’ internal combustion tractor had stepped
in and largely replaced steam.19

A second publication, Farm Equipment for Mechanical Power
provided a splendid discussion of the function and operation of the
threshing machine as well as a brief set of recommendations for
threshing peas and beans. A special feature of this book is its
numerous tables and illustrations.20

If the thresherman ignored such books, or found them not to his
liking, or even if he mastered their contents, he still might wish
to improve himself by other means, such as enrolling in a

J.I.Case sponsored a school for engineers in several locations
and the International Correspondence School in Scranton,
Pennsylvania reportedly had over a thousand students enrolled in
1900 alone. It is unlikely, however, that the majority of these
were threshermen. William Boss of the University of Minnesota
requested that he be allowed to offer a course in power machinery,
including a unit on farm engines, in 1894. Some have claimed that
this was the beginning of such courses. In the same year J.I. Case
invited men to observe and operate engines at its plant. Within two
years Ohio State University placed a special course on steam
traction engines in its curriculum.

The American Thresherman for August 1906 described a School of
Traction Engineering that had been offered in June of that year in
the Manufacturers’ Building on the Minnesota State Fair Grounds
in St. Paul. The idea of a school had originated with Professor
D.D. Mayne, Principal of the Minnesota School of Agriculture, who
corresponded with more than a dozen builders of threshing
machinery, to obtain their support and the promise of engines for
use in the school. He then contacted The American Thresherman
asking for its endorsement. The magazine agreed to put up $1,000,
print the prospectus and provide the stationery, postage and all
other incidental expenses. William Boss was appointed chief
lecturer and P.S. Rose served as the instructor of steam and
gasoline engineering. H.B. White of the Minnesota School of
Agriculture was placed in charge of practice work while J.B. Parker
of The American Thresherman lectured on the cost, operation and
management of a threshing outfit.

Classes convened at eight o’clock each morning and consisted
of lectures, demonstrations, discussions and quizzes. Theoretical
work was followed by ‘taking certain features of the engine and
learning the causes and effects of steam, what its actions would be
under certain conditions, and how the best results might be
obtained and the engine be made to last longer than if handled
improperly.’ The students set tubes in boilers, babbitted boxes
and laced belts. Prizes were awarded for lining up an engine
properly in the least amount of time.

Machinery was supplied by Nichols and Shepard Company, Northwest
Thresher Company, J.I. Case Threshing Machine Company, Advance
Thresher Company, Minneapolis Threshing Machine Company, Reeves
& Co., A.D. Baker Company, Hart-Parr, International Harvester
Company, Charles A. Stickney Co. and Fairbanks Morris. The last
four supplied gasoline engines.

Nearly two hundred students came from eighteen states and
Canada. Except for a few boys in their teens, most were between
twenty and thirty years of age. B.B. Clarke declared the school a
huge success, and proclaimed with his usual exuberance that
‘The School of Traction Engineering is the beginning of a new
epoch in machinery history. It will spread over the world; no power
on earth can prevent its spread.’

Professor P.S. Rose also opened a school in conjunction with
J.B. Parker of The American Thresherman. His was located at the
North Dakota Agricultural College at Fargo. In 1908 the curriculum
was comprised of four courses: steam traction engineering; gasoline
traction engineering; stationary engineering steam and gasoline;
and business methods for threshermen. Students were advised to
confine themselves to two courses.

The May 1908 issue of The American Thresherman carried a
three-quarter page ad that declared that Fargo, located in the
heart of the grain belt of the world, was most favorably situated
for a school. It had not a single saloon! This might have been a
comfort to wives and mothers but it is doubtful that it was a
drawing card. The registration fee was $15.00 and room and board
started at $3.50 per week. These figures seem remarkably low to
those of us living in the early 1990’s, but then a dollar a day
and board was not uncommon. A graduate of Rose’s school of the
previous summer could boast that he had been hired at $6.50 per
day. An ability to read and write were required but no entrance
examination was administered. Diplomas were issued to all

The American Thresherman for August, 1908 acclaimed the Rose
School to have been a success. Two hundred seventy students from 16
states and Canada had attended from June 8 through July 3. This was
eighty more than had attended during the previous year. A Minnesota
boiler inspector exclaimed that ‘if every engineer would take
such a course the number of accidents would be fewer and loss of
life and property caused by boiler explosions greatly

With the arrival of Dr. Edward Rumely, the M. Rumely Company
soon founded the Indiana School of Tractioneering at La Porte,
Indiana. The curriculum of this school was concentrated on oil and
gas engines, thus reflecting changes that were coming about in farm
power and the direction that the company was taking.

An ad in the Rumely Power Seed and Soil for September 1912 read
in part: ‘Earn $65 to $200 per month. The I.S.T. will teach you
how-to operate and expert all types of gas engines, and we will
place you in a paying position if you like. The Indiana School of
Tractioneering will place 300 men between now and April 1st. One
manufacturing concern alone has called for more than 100 experts.
We have arranged, nevertheless, so that you can earn part of your
expenses by work done in the Rumely shops.’

For the purpose of reaching all classes of students, I.S.T.
established residence, traveling and correspondence courses. In the
residence school students received four weeks of instruction in the
principles of engine construction and operation, followed by three
weeks of laboratory work. The laboratory was equipped with six
tractors and ten stationary engines of various types. During the
first term 21 students were in attendance. During the winter of
1912-13 the enrollment jumped to 93 but dropped off again to 40 in
the spring.

Over 2000 students received instruction at traveling school
during this same period. These courses usually lasted only a week
or two, and as one might expect, practical work on tractors and
stationary engines was carried on through the assistance of the
Rumely Products Company, the sales arm of the Rumely firm. The
article in the Rumely publication does not comment on the evening
school curriculum or attendance.21

Recently the traction engine school has been resurrected by men
like Chaddy Atteberry, Wayne Kennedy and Joe Fahnestock. These men
have published descriptions of their efforts.22

Finally, every thresherman could join an association. These
associations did not necessarily provide direct instruction on the
operation of threshing rigs, but they did provide a forum where men
could meet and exchange ideas and discuss matters of politics that
bore upon the threshing enterprise.

Thus through the various means discussed above, anyone who
wanted to become proficient in the operation of threshing machinery
could do so. There was no excuse for ignorance. An ambitious
student had only to follow his inclinations.


1. Iron Men Album, January-February 1990, p. 22.

2. Iron Men Album, November-December 1978, p. 8.

3. Iron Men Album, January-February 1972, p. 9.

4. Engineers and Engines, February-March 1985, p. 10.

5. Letter postmarked February 5, 1990. John Steinkuhl was
selected for the Old Thresher Award by the Midwest Old Threshers,
Mt. Pleasant, Iowa in 1988. John wrote as follows: ‘No license
was required for farmers to run an engine for threshing, just
assurance of liability insurance. However, an operator’s
license to run a steam engine was required in Indiana in coal
mining operations. I never ran the separator much at threshing
time, but when starting, I did help put belts on and line it up. We
seldom had a breakdown because every spring and fall we oiled and
checked. To operate a steam engine there are safety measures I
highly recommend, especially to keep the boiler from blowing up.
Never build a fire in the engine until water level is checked. Be
sure the valves on the water glass are open. All oilers are filled
and in working condition. Between threshings, every few weeks,
boiler needs washing out with clean water, due to it getting
stagnant. When operating, never start running the engine until the
separator man gives you the signal, then alert the crew by tooting
the whistle twice.’

6. James H. Stephenson, Farm Engines and How to Run Them:
The Science of Successful Threshing. Chicago: Frederick J. Drake
& Company, 1903.

7. ‘Traction Engine Troubles.’ Madison, Wisconsin:
The American Thresherman, 1909.

8. ‘Traction Engine Troubles.’ Lancaster,
Pennsylvania: Iron Men Album, 1960.

9. P.S. Rose, Steam Engine Guide. Lancaster, Pennsylvania:
Stemgas Publishing Company, 1982.

10. The Journal of the American Society; of Agricultural
Engineers, December 1962, p. 717. I am indebted to Tom E. Bye,
archivist at the North Dakota Institute for Regional Studies, North
Dakota State University Library, Fargo, North Dakota for supplying
information on P.S. Rose.

11. G.F. Conner, Science of Threshing. St. Joseph,
Michigan: The Threshermen’s Review Company, 1906.

12. James H. Maggard, Rough and Tumble Engineering.
Reissued in 1989 by Rough and Tumble Engineers Historical
Association, Box 9, Kinzers, Pennsylvania 17535. The original went
through several revisions, e.g. the 4th edition was published by
Chicago Engraving Company. I was singularly unsuccessful in
locating further information on the man or his book. Letters to
members of the Rough and Tumble Engineers Historical Association
brought no answers and the standard biographical references
contained no entries for Maggard.

13. H.R. Tolley, Efficient Operation of Threshing Machines,
Washington D.C.: United States Department of Agriculture
Farmer’s Bulletin 991, June 1918.

14. William Boss, Instructions for Traction and Stationary
Engineers. Milwaukee: Olsen Publishing Company, 1906. Unfortunately
this book is rather difficult to obtain. It deserves reprinting
because of its historical significance.

15. Ralph E. Miller, The History of the School of
Agriculture 1851-1960, pp. 28-29, 134. This reference material was
supplied by the University of Minnesota, St. Paul Campus Libraries,
Interlibrary Loans, 1984 Buford Avenue, St. Paul, Minnesota,

16. S.R. Eighinger and Marcius Smedes Hutton, Steam
Traction Engineering. New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1916.

17. Tolley, op. cit.

18. ‘Green Straw Piles in Kansas,’ Iron Men Album,
July-August 1987, p. 9.

19. Farm Knowledge (four volumes). Prepared exclusively for
Sears, Roebuck and Company by Doubleday, Page and Company, 1919.
Lenore Swoiskin was instrumental in locating this source. She was,
in April, 1979, archivist for Sears.

20. Frank N.G. Kranich, Farm Equipment for Mechanical
Power. New York: The Macmillan Company, 1923. Chapters XVIII and

21. Knowing the driving force of Dr. Edward Rumely and his
devotion to education, the involvement of the Rumely Company in the
Indiana School of Tractioneering is understandable. He also
established another school for boys at Interlachen near La Porte,

22. Wayne Kennedy, ‘Everything You Wanted to Know About
Steam But Were Afraid to Ask!!’,Iron Men Album, May-June 1986,
p. 1. Also published in Engineers and Engines, June-July 1986, p.
7. Joe Fahnestock, ‘Bob Zellers’ College of Steam Engine
Knowledge,’ Engineers and Engines, June-July 1986, p. 30.

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