The Montana Prairies

| May/June 1963

  • A power-plowing rig
    This is a picture of an Avery bought about 1910-1912. It was completely reconditioned in 1958 and was used only in North Dakota. It was used for about 15 threshing seasons.

  • A power-plowing rig

Trenton, Missouri

I was bom in Minnesota in '88. In 1910 our family moved to Southeast Montana. I landed at Miles City with barely enough cash to file on a homestead 45 miles Northwest of the town, and the railroad. The following summer I decided to attempt to purchase a power-plowing rig; and hikes to town to see what credit a flat-broke homesteader had with a machine dealer.

I finally bought an old 32 Cross-Compound Reeves engine, and an old 12 bottom plow. I was to pay $850.00 for the engine and $300.00 for the sod-buster. (No money down and pay when I could.) The dealer was plenty glad to clear his yard of the old worn out equipment.

I was 3 weeks getting the outfit home. Enroute while crossing a narrow dry wash about 12 feet deep the heavy drivers collapsed the bridge. The front end had reached solid ground; the bulky plow behind, not yet on the bridge, probably saved my life. The rear of the engine dropped the length of the plow tow chains and stopped. Four days later I was on my way.

We left town burning wood, ran out, and stopped to dig lignite coal from the outcroppings here and there along our bad-land route.

It was late fall when we reached the homestead. I spent the winter repairing and rebuilding the old engine. The fire box sheets and the crown sheet were buckled between nearly all the stay bolts. I put new stay bolts through the center of the worst buckles; also dovetailed in a new cog in one of the bull gears; plus many other major and minor repairs.


Farm Collector April 16Farm Collector is a monthly magazine focusing on antique tractors and all kinds of antique farm equipment. If it's old and from the farm, we're interested in it!

Save Even More Money with our SQUARE-DEAL Plan!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our SQUARE-DEAL automatic renewal savings plan. You'll get 12 issues of Farm Collector for only $24.95 (USA only).

Or, Bill Me Later and send me one year of Farm Collector for just $29.95.

Facebook Pinterest YouTube


click me