Henry G. Bergkamp, 72, of Fowler, Kansas, passed away recently
at Minneola Hospital after a short illness. He was a retired farmer
and had been a resident of Fowler since 1910.
Survivors include the widow; son Bill, daughter, Mrs. Aldine
Maier, Minneola, two brothers, three sisters and nine
Sent in by Mrs. Henry Bergkamp, Fowler, Kansas.
Clarence Klaybaker, of Chapman, Kansas, passed away on June 6,
1970, in an Abilene, Kansas, hospital after a three month illness.
He was a long time subscriber to Iron Men Album magazine and an
active steam engine fan.
Thru the past few years, he built a very fine CASE 65 engine in
three inch scale and at the time of his passing, was in the process
of building the same type engine in six inch scale. We wish he
could have completed this engine.
His many friends and steam fans will miss Clarence very
He is survived by his widow, Betty of the same address.
Sent in by Mr. C. E. (Jack) Kauer.
George R. Yearling, 76, of Coldwater, Michigan, passed away May
3, 1970, after an illness of 10 months.
Sent in by his widow, Mrs. Mary A. Yearling.
John Meiser, Route 3, Kewanna, Indiana, passed away May 19,
1970, at a hospital at Rochester, Ind. at the age of 85 years. He
was a thresher for several years and loved being around the old
Steamers. A member of the Old Time Thresher &’ Saw Mill
Operators Inc. at Ft. Wayne, Ind., he was a faithful member until
his health failed.
Sent in by Frank Miller, R. R. 3, Kewanna, Indiana.
Emil Kopac, 84 years, of Scottsbluff, Nebraska, passed away in
May, 1970. He homesteaded near Cottonwood, South Dakota, later
returning to Schuyler where he and his brothers become Model
‘T’ dealers then Dodge. In 1920 moved to Oshkosh and
engaged in Wheat Farming. Due to failing health left the farm for
Scottsbluff in 1967.
Sent in by Frank Hamata.
Henry G. Nachtrab, 89, of 7181 Hall St., Holland, Ohio, passed
away recently. He was a custom grain thresher for 50 years, before
retiring in 1969. Mr. Nachtrab was the founder of Holland volunteer
fire department in 1917 and served as chief for 30 years. He was a
charter member of the National Threshers Assoc. and member of many
other organizations. He is survived by his son, Lawrence W., 10
grandchildren, 23 great grandchildren and 4 great-great
Sent in by Mrs. Earnest Hoffer, Toledo, Ohio.
Ray H. Ernst, 79, Route 1, Wayland, Iowa, passed away at the
Veterans hospital in Iowa City, May 14, 1970, Survived by his widow
and a sister. He was the last of the original four organizers of
the Midwest Old Settlers and Threshers. He helped to organize the
Old Threshers in Pontiac in 1949.
Sent in by Mrs. Ray Ernst, R. R. 1, Wayland, Iowa 50654.
Elmer Egbert, 71 years of R. R. 1, Botkins, Ohio, passed away
Sunday, December 21, 1969, in Wilson Memorial Hospital, Sidney,
Ohio, after a short illness. Survived by his widow, two sons and
two daughters, 12 grandchildren and 4 great-grandchildren. Mr.
Egbert was a retired farmer and sawmill operator and in earlier
years had been a thresherman and sponsored the Buckeye Threshers
Reunion, held at his home each year.
Sent in by Mrs. Earnest Hoffer, Toledo, Ohio.
Paul Louis Beuhahn passed away June 5, 1970, at the age of 67.
He lived in Monona, Iowa, and member of Lutheran Church of Monona
and a member of the Southwestern Wisconsin Antique Power Club of
Sent in by Wilson Ewaldt, Secretary.
Herbert Swarm, a well known Elkhart County Indiana thresher,
passed to his eternal reward on the 13th day of May 1970, at the
age of 66 years. Herbie was a lover of Baker threshing machinery,
having operated Baker steam engines as well as a Baker gas tractor
until the advent of the combines. The hand of the one who pulled
the whistle many times, as a signal that it was time to quit
threshing and to eat, has now been stilled.
On Saturday, May 16, many friends and relatives laid to rest the
mortal remains, to await that blast of Gabriels trumpet, when it
will be changed and raised a new immortal body.
He is survived by his widow, Mary Swarm, of R. R. 2, Bristol,
Indiana, and 4 children. His father Jacob Swarm was a pioneer
thresher in the Elkhart County area.
Sent in by Lienhart Funeral Home, Wakarusa, Indiana.
Mr. Fred H. Perleberg of Willmar, Minnesota, passed away April
14, 1970. He was a subscriber of the Iron Men Album from its first
publication. Fred will be missed this fall by many old threshers as
each year he would attend steam threshing shows from state to
state. These shows were very near to Fred’s heart. At an early
age he started threshing as a fireman then as an engineer of steam
engines. As the steams left the scene being replaced by the
tractors and later by the combine, Fred went into the Gas business.
He never lost his love for the steam engine. In 1953 he bought a 25
horsepower Nichols & Shepard steam engine. In 1954 he held in
Willmar what was known as the Threshers Reunion. He had by then
collected fifteen steam engines and twenty-five tractors which made
a real good show. These Threshers Reunions he held each year until
1965 when his place had been taken into the city of Willmar and a
show could not be held there.
He continued to collect and restore steamers and big tractors.
He traveled for many miles looking for engines, bringing them from
as far south as Kansas, from as far west as Montana and as far east
Fred always talked about the ‘Good Old Days’ when these
engines were so very important to this great farming country of
In 1958 when the Minnesota State Fair celebrated Minnesota’s
100th Anniversary, Fred took his 35 horse double cylinder Nichols
& Shepard steam engine and his 25 horsepower Nichols &
Shepard to the Minnesota Fairgrounds. These days at the Fair were
the height of Fred’s enjoyment as he saw the large crowds look
at these great powerful engines of the past. ‘The Good Old
Days,’ he would say.
We who knew him will miss Fred as we too think of these good old
days we spent together at these Threshing Reunions.
Sent in by Pastor Arthur J. Johnson for Fred’s son, Floyd
Perleberg, Willmar, Minnesota 56201.