Picture This: Steam Traction Postcards

Colorful steam traction postcards open a window in time.

| July 2005

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    Giants of steam: Case, Geiser, Reeves and Rumely engines work the land in these postcards mailed between 1910-1915. The Kelly Springfield Road Roller (left) working Kansas City’s Nelson Road stands in wonderful contrast to the evocative images of breaking the prairie.

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The literature of steam can be as involving as the machinery itself, a point perfectly illustrated by these fabulous postcards and their lively depiction of steam traction engines going through the daily machinations of working the land.

With the exception of the Kelly Springfield Road Roller, the postcards focus on steam traction engines working the vast tracts of the upper Midwest and West. Mailed out to friends and relatives across the country, the cards are colorful, powerful reminders of the past, capturing forever the energy and enthusiasm of pioneering farmers and the machinery that helped them tame the West.

These postcards come from the collection of reader John Davidson, an avid collector of steam and engine-related photos and literature. John seeks out material at antique shops, book stores and on eBay, and these postcards are just a sample of his wonderful collection.



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