Tacoma, Ohio, tells this interesting experience while he was
representing the Gaar Scott Company many years ago
Recently when looking over copies of old copies and reports, I
came across this one
A party made an inquiry for a 10 hp. engine and a plain 24′
thresher to be delivered in his barn lot and pay cash.
In following up the inquiry at quite a distance from the main
line of the railroad I made inquiry where Jake lived. A German
fellow said, ‘Shake, the up country Dutchman who runs a Thresh
Box a mile up the creek.’
It being as fine a June day as one could wish for and having all
day I walked up to see Jake. I found him counting the bolts he
would have when he tore up the Thresh Box, as he called it. It
surely was an out of date affair. Once run by tread power but he
now run it with a little old steam portable engine, also a
curiosity. Beam and weight for a relief valve and an old tallow cup
for a lubricator.
Father, mother, son and all the family had studied the catalog
and were anxiously waiting for a cash price after it was run into
I informed him that in paying cash it would have to be before it
was unloaded from the freight car and pay the freight to a station
nearly 20 miles away.
Jake, his wife and elder son gave an order for the Rig but still
insisted that someone come and help unload and run it out. This was
agreed to with their help.
Early in July the outfit arrived. Jake was on hand but was
somewhat put out when there was no water in the boiler when it left
the factory. I told him they never did that for anyone and if they
did he would have to pay extra freight for the water. By the time
received for the Rig and freight, filled the boiler and unloaded it
was about dark.
Jake took time to explain to his friends the bargain he got and
he expected income from his investment and got keyed up somewhat
from something stronger than water.
I made it plain to him that in the morning we expected to make a
start for his place by daylight and if he was in that plight the
Rig would set and I was going out on the first train. He said he
would get as drunk as a Mountain Owl and still do more than his boy
who would be on hand early in the morning and never tasted
The following morning we got a day-light start with plenty of
coal. Water was plentiful along the road. The road followed the
river and was none too good. Some few miles out we met the son and
tank wagon. We switched the team to the thresher and the tank to
the engine and a chain from tank to thresher as the team had had a
long trip that morning. The team soon got wise and let the engine
do the pulling. By nightfall we came to a bad bridge across the
little river. We decided to let the team take the thresher across
the bridge and the engine and tank would go around to a good
bridge. On investigation I found a good fording place a half mile
up. We had to go through a farmers field but he readily
The next morning we took advantage of the fording and got over
fine. That day we encountered bad roads and were out of coal. We
had to rely on wood for fuel, which was plentiful but none too
good. We had to keep a good head of steam. Jake began grumbling,
‘enshine worn out already.’ Soon I found a piece of tin and
put it on the grate bars next to the flues. And how that little ten
fired then. Jake said, ‘damn good enshine when you know what to
do.’ Jake nearly all the way insisted on a full glass of water.
I used two or three inches. Jake said, ‘whoever will my enshine
blow up pays me if alive.’
The rest of the trip was up and down. Some very steep but short
hills. One, where I insisted the team do some pulling fearing we
might get stuck, but we got up and then to Jake’s barn yard. I
then hustled to the Little New York station to get a main line
train. This was one well remembered trip forty five years ago.