Our family became acquainted with BILL WARD of Wichita, Kansas
in 1984. Bill loved steam engines, and his dream was to own and
operate one. Since a full sized one was out of the question, Bill
began working on a scale model, which he proudly displayed at our
annual steam show, as well as taking it elsewhere for
everyone’s enjoyment. Bill was usually the first to fire up in
the morning and the last to shut down.
In May of 1990 Bill became ill and had to curtail his
activities. He took treatments for several months and seemed to
rally round. He felt so much better, that he came out for days
before the show and assisted with whatever he could. During the
show he entered every race, shelled corn, plus whatever else he
could think of to do with his model. After the show he returned to
assist with clean-up. It seemed he did not want to leave any
In December 1990, Bill’s earthly business was finished. I
guess the Lord needed another assistant engineer up in Heaven.
Bill’s smiling face will be missed by all those who knew
him. Thanks, Bill, for all the memories.
Submitted by Tom, Lois, and Aaron Terning, R.R. #3, Box 184,
Valley Center, KS 67147.
JOE R. POINDEXTER of Montgomery City, Missouri, passed away
suddenly at his home, May 27, 1991. Joe was very active in the
steam world. One of the original founders, past president and
charter member of Montgomery County Old Threshers Show, he devoted
much time and work and was very fond of Baker engines. He had two
Bakers and built a very fine model. He was a man of great knowledge
and talent, and could repair anything that went wrong with a steam
engine or thresher or saw mill.
When he built his fine model of a Baker engine, he got his dream
and wish fulfilled. It was his plan to have a Baker engine and a
Keck-Gonner-man separator; he said that made a good outfit. He had
a 1904 Counter Flow 20 HP and a 1921 21-75 Uniflo, both in
excellent condition. They needed lots of work when he got them, but
it didn’t take him long to put them in tip top shape. He was an
expert on setting Baker valves and other valves, too. He said he
would have liked to have had the chance to open the throttle on one
of Union Pacific’s big boys. I think he would have done a fine
job of it.
Joe was a Christian man and said the good Lord was his
conductor. He knew one day he would open the throttle for his
Heavenly home, where we believe he has completed a safe and happy
Submitted by Bob Hart, Box 207, Perry, MO 63462
ARTHUR G. KENT, of Athens, Illinois died November 26, 1990 at
age 94. Mr. Kent was born in River-ton and lived in Wisconsin for
many years. He returned to Illinois, residing there for 52
He worked as a railroad engineer, in custom thrashing, and as a
law officer. After moving to Illinois, he engaged in farming, water
and coal hauling and was a self-employed heavy equipment
He married Irene Eades in Springfield in 1936. Mr. Kent was a
charter member of the Prairie Land Heritage Museum Association of
There was an article in IMA, May-June issue, about his selling
his two engines to the Haley Brothers of Odell, Illinois. I made
the sale for Mr. Kent, since he was in poor health. He also had a
33′ Russell Ward threshing machine.
Surviving are his wife, Irene, two daughters, five
grandchildren, one stepdaughter, 12 great-grandchildren, several
nieces and nephews.
Sent to us by Donald Werth, Rt. 3, Box 105, Lincoln, IL
RUSSELL E. CADE of Monticello, Illinois, passed away October 25,
1990 at the age of 70. Russ was an active member of the Douglas
County Historical Steam Festival at Arcola, Illinois and was
invaluable in both steam and gasoline expertise. His willingness to
help other fellow enthusiasts, young and old, will always be
remembered by his friends and acquaintances.
Having served in Germany during World War II, Russ never knew
the meaning of ‘it can’t be done’ and proved to others
that matters of seemingly insurmountable odds could be conquered.
As a result of his example, others were compelled to follow his
Russ always engineered the 80 HP Case at the Arcola Steam
Festival and we know that he stands on the platform of eternity
with the great engineer of the heavens and that he had always
followed in his everyday life. We will miss you Russ.
Submitted by Fred Nolan, Co Sponsor, Douglas County
Historical Steam Festival, Arcola, IL.