Southwest Ohio lost one of its oldest threshermen September 27,
1991 at age 99, CLARENCE DAFLER.
Mr. Dafler lived his entire life in the New Lebanon-Farmersville
area of Montgomery County, Ohio. He followed his father into the
farming, threshing & gravel plant business along with two
brothers, Horace and Clyde.
He ran numerous threshing rigs but Garr Scott was his favorite.
He visited Darke County Steam Thresher shows nearly every year and
rode on a Garr Scott engine at the 1990 show.
Mr. Dafler was a life member of Slifers Presbyterian Church,
Farmersville; an Army veteran of WWI; 65-year member of New Lebanon
American Legion Post 762; and Jr. Order of Mechanics of Middletown,
Preceded in death by his wife Martha, he is survived by his son
Charles and daughter-in-law Sandra of Dallas, Oregon; daughter Zoa
and son-in-law Roy Rowe of Brookville, Ohio; four grandchildren and
three great grandchildren.
Submitted by Ed Troutman, 14 March Ave., Brookville, Ohio
LAWRENCE HOFFMAN, 69, of Guttenberg, formerly of LaMotte, died
December 29, 1991 in Dubuque, Iowa.
Lawrence was the son of Nicholas and Anna (Hingtgen) Hoffman of
La Motte. Surviving are his wife, Helen, a son Joseph (and Cherie)
Hoffman of LaMotte and their two children, three stepsons, one
brother and three sisters and his first wife, Mary.
Hoffman, a cousin of Justin J. Hingtgen who died in 1969, was
the owner of an Advance steam engine which was sold to Randy
Schwerin of Sumner, Iowa. He also had a **** scale steam engine
sold to Ray Korn of Wisconsin.
Lawrence was involved, along with FLOYD SCHOLTES of Belle-view,
Iowa, who died in 1991, in shows at Prairie Du Chien, Wisconsin and
Postville, Iowa. H. Leslie Leas of Monona who died summer of 1989
also exhibited engines at Postville and other area shows. Lawrence
displayed his Advance at Ray Sweeney’s Threshing Days at
Waukon. He helped the people at the North East Farm Antique
Association at Garber with the engine they acquired. He was a
member of the Boscobel Antique Club of Boscobel, Wisconsin.
He and Floyd Scholtes would sometimes engage in loud and
apparently heated discussions or arguments, often with threats of
violence. There may have been some difference of opinion, but a lot
of times it was a display to stimulate and worry the crowd and for
their own amusement. Now the fighting is over.
Floyd Scholtes was the guy with the white cap. He was a retired
farmer, steam engine owner and sawyer. Floyd was instrumental at
the Deppe Threshing Day at Bellevue and in getting Cliff Smorstad
of Decorah to bring his portable sawmill to that show. He had sold
his Case 65 steam engine in the mid 40’s before Hingtgen
started having shows.
Floyd enjoyed his style of whistle blowing. He and Lawrence
worked to get a teeter-totter for steam engines at Prairie Du
Chien. John Southard of Allegan, Michigan came to help with that
Submitted by Bob Koos, Box 66, LaMotte, Iowa 52024.
It is our sad duty again to report the loss of one of the old
gentlemen who added so much knowledge, color and interest to our
shows since their inception thirty or forty years ago, DAVID J.
McDONALD of Georgetown, Pa., who died in the Beaver Valley
Geriatric Center on January 4, 1992 at the age of 90 years. He had
been confined there for over a year as gradually failing health
took its toll. He celebrated his 90th birthday on February 23,
1991, at which time his family held a party in the social rooms at
the center. Good weather allowed a good attendance of about 100
people indicating the high regard in which Dave was held throughout
Dave had threshed and baled all over the central part of Beaver
County Pennsylvania and into the panhandle part of West Virginia,
as well as having his own farm, and so was widely known. He had
used steam power in his early days and knew lots about it but went
to Oil Pull tractors many years ago and they were his first love in
machinery for the rest of his days. He had two good ones, an old
style and a lightweight in the latter years when I knew him; they
were both immaculate and ran like new. None of the problems that
detractors like to blame on the Oil Pull bothered Dave. He knew all
the ins and outs of the machines and how to make them perform on
demand. He often fired them on ground oil or crude so he could make
nice smoke rings for the crowd. He also seemed to particularly like
baling at the shows and I learned from experience that if he had
decent help shoving straw to him, he could make the boys tying the
wires keep dancing to put wires around the parts of that continuous
stream of straw.
The old style 16-30 Oil Pull has found a good home with his son
Jim who has it out to some shows now and then.
Dave’s help and fellowship will be greatly missed at show
time and all year long by hundreds of friends and family.
Submitted by Thomas G. Downing, Pres., Northwest
Pennsylvania Steam Engine and Old Equipment Association, Inc.,
R.D.I, Box 149A, Ellwood City, Pa. 16117.
LESTER TOOLE, retired mechanic and sawyer, passed into the
‘Land of the Golden Whistles’ on December 21, 1991. He was
born January 25, 1918 and was a lifelong resident of Harrison
County, Ohio. He had been in failing health for about a year but
poor health the last two weeks. He is survived by his wife, Melba,
whom he married May 20, 1947; two daughters, Linda and Jane; one
grandson; four step-grandchildren and four great grandchildren.
Lester was a WW II veteran of U.S. Army and was awarded the
Purple Heart and the Bronze Star. He was a member of the Stumptown
Steam Threshers, the Tuscarawas Valley Pioneer Power Association,
and the Ohio Valley Flywheels. Lester served as secretary for the
Stumptown Steam Threshers for three years and was on the Board of
Directors for twelve years. He was also the sawyer at the Stumptown
show and was selected Thresherman of the Year in 1982.
During the early 1930s, Lester worked for the McFadden Brothers
Sawmill when they sawed the huge timbers for the (Old Ironsides)
U.S. Constitution’s main beam and shipped it to the Boston
Children had pitched in pennies for the restoring of the
Lester will be sadly missed by his family and many friends.
Submitted by William Flowers, Sec. for Stumptown Steam
BOB NEINER, age 68, died at his farm home west of Manteno,
Illinois, September 27, 1991, after a lingering illness.
Bob was a member of the Will County Threshermen’s
Association and the Olde Time Farm Show for many years. He enjoyed
demonstrating his Case 65 steam engine and Avery 32′ threshing
machine. He also displayed his Aultman Taylor 30-60 tractor on the
sawmill and pulling an eight bottom steam engine plow.
He was instrumental in donating the use of his heavy earth
moving equipment in preparing two show sites for the Will County
Threshermen’s Association. His contributions and assistance
will be missed by all.
Submitted by Mel Meyer, past president, SCTA, 19159 Riegel,
Homewood, Illinois 60430.
ARTHUR P. ‘BRIG’ BRIGHAM, editor of the Eagle, quarterly
newsletter of the J. I. Case Heritage Foundation died January 22 at
Brig was born in Washington, D.C. and grew up in Montgomery
County, Maryland. A journalism graduate of the University of
Maryland, Brig held various posts in the field through the years.
In 1959, he became Public Affairs Officer of the Washington
Suburban Sanitary Commission, a post he held until 1981. After
retirement in 1981, Brig was a public relations and marketing
consultant for several firms.
The husband of Helen Case Brigham, great-granddaughter of J. I.
Case, Brig gave the magic of his journalistic and public relations
ability to the J. I. Case Heritage Foundation because he wanted to
do it. The couple’s involvement with old farm machinery began
when he spotted a picture of a Case steam engine on the front page
of a Gaithersburg, Maryland weekly newspaper.
Submitted by Helen Case Brigham, J. I. Case Heritage
Foundation, Inc., P.O. Box 5128, Bella Vista, Arkansas
Norm Wright’s 1/4 scale model of a 1916 65 HP Case engine
pulled a cart at an Ontario event. Photo by the late Arthur
Brigham, a frequent contributor to this magazine.