STEAM ENGINE IN RETIREMENT

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JIM BOGARD fires Tooter for a demonstration. (Citizen Staff Photo)
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TOOTER provided the power which moved this 11,000 ton structure from one location to another.

R. R. 3, Linton, Indiana 47441 and with the courtesy and
permission of the local newspaper, the Linton Daily Citizen.
‘Copyright 1969, The Los Angeles Times – Reprinted with its
permission.’

‘I’m ready for retirement,’ the little steam engine,
which we shall call Tooter, said as he huffed and puffed and tooted
merrily away at his retirement home on the farm grounds of Mr. and
Mrs. Jim Bogard two miles north of Linton on highway 54.

Tooter could tell of a long, busy exciting career if he wished
to take time from retirement pleasures to do so. He arrived in this
world about 1908 through the courtesy of the American Hoist and
Derrick Co., just at the time when steam engines generated the
power used for jobs of all kinds from running locomotives to
threshing machines and were the principal source of power for this
work.

One of the highlights of Tooter’s career was the time he
moved an eight-story 11,000 ton structure in Indianapolis. This
happened in 1930 when the main building of Indiana Bell was moved
from its original Meridian street site to its present location on
New York St. Larger buildings had been moved before, but never one
of such size in which business as usual went on during the move.
Some 600 employees of the company reported for work daily and even
the elevators kept running, although they didn’t descend below
the first floor. The power of Tooter moved the building on the
special rollers which were used. This feat gained recognition
around the world and was written in Hix’s ‘Strange As It
seems’ column. Tooter has used his power on many construction
jobs as he exerted a lot of force after having his stomach filled
with fuel to fill the boiler full of steam.

A few years ago, the late Tom Wilson of rural Linton purchased
Tooter and brought him to his farm near Linton. After Mr.
Wilson’s death, Jim Bogard, who is a steam engine man of long
standing and who worked with steam engines for many years and now
wants to play with one, purchased Tooter and moved him the short
distance from the Wilson farm to his.

Now Tooter spends his time reminiscing over past glories and on
occasion huffing and puffing until he builds up enough steam to
toot his steam whistle for visitors who drop by the Bogard home to
see how a steam engine works. So – if you should happen to hear a
steam engine whistle and want to watch the engine operate, hurry
out to the Bogards and see Tooter strut his stuff.

Farm Collector Magazine
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Dedicated to the Preservation of Vintage Farm Equipment