Past and Present:

| July/August 2002

Traction Engines and Threshing Machines

Keck, Reeves and Rumely Chady Atteberry, 931 Robin Road, Blackwell, OK 74631, writes in this issue.

I am enclosing a picture of the Henry Elling outfit threshing near Jefferson, Okla., in 1915. I believe the engine is a 25 HP Reeves and the separator a Nichols & Shepard Red River Special. My friend Marvin Bules, Pond Creek, Okla., gave me the picture. As to the size of the engine, I'll leave that up to Lyle Hoffmaster and Gary Yaeger. She was a dandy outfit when 'Steam was King.'

I was born about three miles east of where the picture was taken. Jefferson, Okla., was our mailing address. The first steam traction engine I rode on was a 20 HP Russell, which came by the farm in 1934. The engineer stopped to take on water. Times have sure changed.

Dad and I got stuck in the sand road, which was Highway 60 just east of Pond Creek, Okla. The car was an Essex. Criminals wouldn't walk two dusty miles to rob or rape if they knew they'd be welcomed by five barking, unchained dogs and a double-barrel shotgun.

The second picture shows Pete Rose of Garber, Okla., on Keck-Gonnerman double rear-mount number 1636. This picture was taken Nov. 13, 1983. I owned 1636 at that time.

The third picture shows the Advance Rumely Dealers School. This picture was taken at the Rumely factory in La Porte, Ind., in 1917. Pete Rose worked for Rumely, and Pete is visible in the first row; the man to far right on the end. Pete moved to Enid, Okla., as a serviceman for Rumely. Pete was the first president of Oklahoma Steam Threshers, Pawnee, Okla. In the hobby years, Pete owned a Rumely steam engine and a Rumely Oil Pull tractor. Pete Rose lived to be 100 years old.