369 S. Harrig St., Madisonville, Ky. 42431.
The 2nd annual show of the Tenn-Ky Thresherman’s Assn. was
held in Adams, Tenn. (Home of The Bell Witch), July 23rd, 24th and
25th. In the 3 day period more than 7500 people attended and from
all indications everyone enjoyed themselves immensely. There were
10 steam engines, 5 large and 5 small ones, all of them at work.
There was a 16 H. P. Peerless owned by Dorris Bland, a 19 H. P.
Keck-Gonnerman owned by the Payne Bros., a 19 H. P. Keck-Gonnerman
owned by Vernon Griffin and Pat Boyles, a 12 H. P. Russell owned by
Hub Spencer and a 16-60 H. P. Nichols & Shepard owned by the
writer. Of the smaller engines, there was a Garr-Scott owned by
Wallace Freeman which pulled a scale Frick sawmill owned by Jim
Evans, another small Garr-Scott which pulled a grist mill, both
owned by Mr. Evans. A model Nichols & Shepard owned by Earnest
Williams pulled a cider mill, a free lance model with a White Steam
car engine owned by Mrs. Lorraine Sweeny pulled children and a
model portable Case owned by Charley Pence pulled the Baker
Paul Brien had a scale model 0-6-0 Southern Pacific switcher and
cars that he had made which kept him busy hauling the children. It
was a pleasure to hear the exhaust of the little engine. She sure
had a good square valve motion. There was a 1918 Moline 2-wheel
drive tractor owned by Goldie Stewart, an oil pull owned by Wallace
Freeman, a Keck-Gonnerman owned by Carl Walling and an F-20 owned
by Jim Evans. All of these took turns on the separators and Baker
Of the separators there was 28 Mc-Cormick-Deering owned by the
writer, a 28 Keek-Gonnerman owned by Mode Hampton and a 22 inch
Case owned by Edgar Hill. The Kentucky Moonshiners from Cadiz, Ky.
were there with their still, mash, etc. that would make you feel
single and see double. They put on a good show several times a day.
The Moonshiners VS The Revernoors. There was a Teeter-Totter, a
yoke of oxen, an old 1914 covered school wagon and some of the
prettiest mules ever seen.
Menzie Kemmerling, a Director of the Booneville, Ind. Antique
Steam & Gas Engine Club brought his hot-air engine. Several of
the fellows from the Booneville Club were there and we appreciate
their presence, moral support and help. There were steam stationary
engines and a steam-powered sewing machine. Other displays included
antique cars, a 1925 Mack truck owned by jack Gray, ingenious
agricultural tools, equipment and implements of by-gone days, early
American carpenter, mechanical, black-smiting and other tools and
implements, pre-electric era house hold furnishings and nostalgic
miscelland of the past.
Among those present was Dan L. Kenner, 102 years old who in his
time has worn out 7 steam engines and separators in 61 years of
threshing. His last engine was a 32 H. P. cross-compound Reeves
which was scrapped in the 1950s. He ran one of the engines a little
and enjoyed it very much as did the other old Timers. ‘It feels
good’, he said, ‘but you forget when it’s been so long
a time.’ Carl Donahoo (former owner) ran the writer’s
engine. He threshed with it for 35 years until the combines took
over. He never thought he would get to thresh with it again. It
brought back many memories to him. One time he was going down a
long hill with a heavy separator behind him and the pin in the
clutch came out and there was a narrow one lane bridge at the foot
of the hill. It was just luck that he met no one. I can imagine how
he felt going that fast with a heavy engine and separator and no
way to stop it.
On Sat. July 24th there was a parade of power with Mr. Everette
Pyle as the very able Master of Ceremonies who gave an interesting
history of each engine and tractor, their specifications and facts
about the different Companies that made them. On Sunday there were
Church Services under the big tent and there was gospel singing
every night. The show for 1972 will be held on July 21st, 22nd and
23rd at the Bell School grounds in Adams, Tenn. which is 41 miles
north of Nashville on U. S. 41 and 7 miles south of Guthrie, Ky.
where U. S. 41 and 79 intersect.
Come on and relive the past with us as it was in ‘The Golden
Age Of Steam.’ The Officers of The Assn. for 1972 are E. A.
Meggs Promoter, J. C. McMurtry Press, Paul Brien V. Pres., Royce
Adkins Sec, Joel Bradley Treas., Board of Directors, Chairman J. O.
Walker, Members, B. H. York, Vernon Griffin, E. V. Freedle, Earnest
Williams, J. A. Miller, Wallace Freeman and Billy Byrd.