Box 1404, Beaverlodge, Alberta, Canada TOH OCO
1909 120 HP Rumely. This engine is used to operate the museum's sawmill which uses a 48' blade. Runs the mill with little effort. Tony Lieverse is the engineer.
Now that fall has passed, crops are in and the steamers are drained for another year. I thought it time to send in a report of Pioneer Day 1997. This year the day was July 20, and I think it was the warmest day we had last summer, with the temperature reaching 30 degrees C. Weather like that sure keeps the booths busy with cold drinks. We had a very large crowd and everything went extremely smooth. Our eighteen display buildings were full of people and artifacts. Musical entertainment was supplied all day and Circle bank Hall had a great variety of handicrafts for sale. This coupled with a great show of machinery, cold drinks, and great food kept the crowds well satisfied.
Our machinery events were run to perfection by the dozens of volunteers. All operate three times a day, so this required a lot of cooperation to keep events on time. The tractor parade is always fun, and this year we had some new additions. A Farmall H was proudly displayed by its owner just after receiving its from-the-ground-up restoration. Arne even had a belt driven welder attached to the side of the tractor in case he needs to do some welding on something.
Also new this year was a David Brown row crop tractor. This little fellow is a two cylinder air cooled diesel utilizing center mount implements. It has been used by the Research Station for about thirty years, but is still in perfect operating condition.
Getting up steam in early morning. Left to right: 1912 75 HP Gaar Scott; 1912 75 HP Case; 1914 30 HP Waterloo; 1914 82 HP Sawyer Massey.
Another event which has become very popular with both the operators and the visitors is our dyno demonstration. We use either the steamers or gas tractors for this demo and it certainly does make them work. After a few minutes on the dyno there are no ashes in the smokebox of the steamers! A friendly ongoing dispute was settled between the owners of a Case 500 and a Massey 555 as to which one could produce the most power. This year the Case won, but I'm sure the 555 will be tuned and back next year for another season of fun. These two will probably keep the contest going for years with one tractor or another.
We had a great addition to our steamer collection this year, bringing our total operating traction engines to eight. Harry Laye brought his 1924, 22 HP Advance Rumely steamer to be left at the museum for display and use. It was used on the thresher and the dyno this year as well as in the parade. It's a great engine and an easy steamer to operate.
Another nice addition this year was the display presented by Ed. Carlson of two John Deere power units. They are belted to feed grinders and are ready to operate at anytime. Many people were unaware that John Deere made such a unit, so it was really nice to present such a nice display. The log plane, shingle mills, sawmill, planer and blacksmith were as popular as ever! As each event began its demo, the crowds were thick.
As the day drew to a close and the steamers headed back into their new storage/display building everyone headed for a cold drink. Next year is going to be bigger and better than ever, with new events already in the works.
If you would like any information about the South Peace Centennial Museum please contact us at 403-354-8869 or Box 493, Beaverlodge, Alberta, Canada TOH OCO.