POST CARD


| May/June 1984



Steam traction engine

Sawyer-Massey 25 HP compound steam traction engines built in 1911 by the Sawyer-Massey Company, LTD, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada and owned by Barrett Muir, Shanty Bay, Ontario. This S-M compound is believed to be the only one left today in good running order.

Photo taken at the Ontario Steam & Antique Preservers Association Show at Milton, Ontario by Jack C. Norbeck, author of Encyclopedia of American Steam Traction Engines and included in the third revised edition. See article this issue about Sawyer-Massey.

Frank, Jonn, Louis and Joe Vondruska brothers pictured, the crew are as follows, left to right: Jerry Jonas and Jim Tichota, grain haulers. Mr. and Mrs. Nick Podliska and Mr. and Mrs. Anton Shedda, John Podliska is on the bundle rack. Joe A. Vondruska, separator man, is on the separator center. The other two men are not known. Frank Vondruska and Frank Poldiska are on the water wagon. The team of horses belonged to Frank Vondruska. Shedda's hired man is sitting on the wheel. Louis Vondruska, engineer, was substituting for John Vondruska, main engineer. The other four bundle haulers were out in the field loading bundles of grain. The threshing crew had about sixteen jobs and some years as many as eighteen jobs north of Howells, Nebraska. When they were finished shock threshing they would pull south of Howells to the vicinity of Tabor and do stack threshing. Those were the good old days, gone are the memories. Submitted by Joseph J. Vondruska (son of John), Route 1, Schuyler , Nebraska 68661.

'I have been around steam engines all my life started running them at eleven years. Took up harvest and threshing in 1915 about 20 or 25 miles S S West of Jamestown, North Dakota. One morning I counted 28 threshing rigs around us. They were firing with coal. Also saw a mirage that same morning. Worked for a Mr. Fred Beyers. He was a good thresher and wonderful to be with. I wonder if his folks descendents still live on.'

CLARENCE AUNGST Rt. 1. Box 91, Winona, Minnesota 55987

Chester Petrowsky of 12 Grela Terrace, Belchertown, MA 01007 sent this picture and told us: 'This engine came from the Swift River Box Co. of Athol, Mass. It was sold to A. J. Raymond of Athol in 1906. It was used as a blower until 1952. In 1972 it was removed and I purchased it in 1981. I spent a year and a half restoring it and have displayed it at several shows and parades. The only changes made were the addition of a flywheel and a governor.' Technical data on the engine: Type: I.S.I.; Dia. Cyl.: 5'; Stroke: 7.500'; Rod Dia.: .9375; RPM: 200; Rim Speed: 2120 58 Ft per Min.; HP: 8.24318.