By Staff
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An old return-flue that couldn't take any more pressure.
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H.P. NEW HOLLAND. Restored by John D. Grubb.


Enclosed is a copy of a snapshot which was given to my good
friend Ben Fischer of Bowesmont, North Dakota. It shows what was
left of a good old return-flue job that apparently had ‘had
enough.’ The degree of demolition is almost unbelievable, but a
fragment of the boiler section is visible, together with a twisted
and broken engine frame and broken gearing and bent drive wheel.
The coal wagon remains intact, but no information is at hand
concerning any possible casualties in this terrible explosion.
While the old photo is a bit dim, I hope that it may reproduce, and
because of its very unusual nature I should like to send another
copy of the snap to our western friend Steam Engines, as likely
there may be several readers of one magazine who may not also see
the other, and I am presuming that you will not mind this

Since I am greatly interested in what may come from the soil,
under good cultivation, I am looking forward to that time when I
may again take utmost pleasure in gardening and a bit of fruit
orchard. Could anything be more enlightening? In my alumni magazine
recently appeared the following, as quoted from Light of Many
Lamps; you may wish to re-print it for our readers as it is a
beautiful thought:

‘If this were my last day I’m almost
I’d spend it working in my garden….
Then, as I rested, perhaps a friend
or two,
Lovers of flowers would come and
we could walk
About my little garden paths and talk
Of peaceful times when all the world
seemed true.
This may be my last day, for all
I know;
What a temptation just to spend it so!’

Of course my faithful traction engine would be alongside the
field where I might glance up and see it every now and then, for it
too was a great tiller of the soil, the Iron Man.

FRANK J. BURRIS, Marietta, Georgia


Your magazine carries excellent photos and interesting stories
about steam engine and threshing operators from all over the
country, but I would like to see some of the local boys, in the
Hummelstown, Harrisburg, Middle-town, Hershey area come forth with
some of their history and experiences. For instance, there is a Mr.
David Seibert, Hummelstown, R.D., who operated a number of steam
threshing rigs, was one of the biggest in the area and I am sure he
could supply a wealth of very interesting information on his
experiences in the business.

While I am very much interested in steam engines, I do not have
the space to house one of these big beauties and therefore have
confined my restoring activities to small gasoline engines of the
farm variety. I believe that there are others with similar
interests and therefore would like to see your magazine expand into
this field.

I have a one horse power MOGUL engine which my father purchased
about 40 years ago. I restored this engine a few years back and am
now in the process of re-doing it. I am enclosing a photo of a
restoring job which I just completed on a Horse Power NEW HOLLAND,
serial 7912. This engine had been lying out back of the barn on a
farm scrap pile for 9 years when I purchased it last fall. It is
now in excellent appearance and good running condition.

Also, it was with great interest and surprise that I read in
your January-February issue, that you are serving as pastor of the
Paxton Methodist Church. Again in the new issue ‘The School
Marm’ writes her confession on watching a Blue Bird through the
open window of this church. This brings some very happy memories to
my mind, for I also looked through this same window and stood
behind the same pulpit. At that time I lived in Hummelstown and was
a member of the Hummelstown Methodist Church. On various occasions
my wife and I would visit with our Methodist friends at the Paxton
Church. Then one day I was compelled to do a terrible thing to
these friends. I received a phone call from the then district
superintendent, Dr. Alexander Smith, asking if I would fill the
pulpit at Paxton for a few Sundays until he could appoint a
minister to the charge, and I accepted. So these good folks were
forced to listen to me or, perhaps they too preferred to watch the
singing birds through the open window. Will you convey my greetings
and best wishes to these folks and particularly to Mr. and Mrs.
Harry Sauers.

JOHN D. GRUBB, Reading Tire Company, Wyomissing,

Farm Collector Magazine
Farm Collector Magazine
Dedicated to the Preservation of Vintage Farm Equipment