Threshing The Wheat From The Chaff

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Leo R. Clark
Courtesy of Old Time Threshers & Sawmill Operators, Fort Wayne, Indiana Threshing scene at the 1968 Old Time Thresher Show. Picture by Leo R. Clark, 105 Harvey St., Washington, Illinois.

I wish to thank those who ordered the steam engine records at
Wauseon, Ohio-N.T.A. and during the weeks following, for their
patience. I had ordered a supply of the record discs on which these
are made, way back on July first. ALLIED RADIO CORP. of Chicago
cashed my check on July third and it was returned through the bank
to me. After waiting weeks for delivery, I was notified the record
discs were on back order and a special order sent for me would be
expected around Sept. 2nd. On Sept. 18th I got a letter saying they
were already shipped. After waiting more weeks, and the shipment
not arriving, I went to bat to learn the reason why. Usually I
received my order from ALLIED in around six days. But now it was
reaching toward the middle of October and no record discs. After
three long-distance phone calls, costing me around six dollars
extra, and several additional notes of inquiry, I soon realized the
right-hand didn’t know what the left-hand was doing and neither
did the computer. First one young lady would answer the phone with
the usual promises, but no results. Next time another young lady
would answer and still no results. The third time another answered
only to admit that they no longer handled the record discs and
admitting my money should be returned.

I replied, ‘If you don’t handle the record discs, why
did they cash my check back on July third and keep promising to
send them? They could’ve told me then that they no longer
handled the discs – and I could’ve been getting them

Even then, after all the promises, neither did the record discs
come – nor was my money returned. Finally it required a firm, stiff
note to demand that my money be refunded.

Never had my orders previously been so delayed, or had I ever
been treated so shoddily at ALLIED before. All this confusion and
delay – now that the offices are no doubt computerized to expedite
delivery and eliminate confusion !

Meantime I’ve been gradually catching up with the back
orders for the steam engine records which are not mass-produced
like Bing Crosby records, but made one at a time on order.

However, while waiting on the record discs, I’ve been doing
a little thinking. One can’t help but wonder what’s gone
wrong with the Russian space program? What has happened to the ten
year lead the Soviet space program had over ours, when in 1957 they
sneaked the first little sputnik up into orbit around the earth
during the International Geophysical Year – leaving us quite
apprehensive and frightened at the portent of Russian

Then Yuri Gagarin made the first sub-orbital space flight,
announcing, ‘I didn’t see God up there.’

Finally up went the first U. S. satellite to orbit its beeps
around the earth. Then sub-orbital and orbital flights by our space
men, in a frantic effort to catch up. But the horizon of the future
didn’t seem to bode very bright or promising for the United
States space programs, with Jean Dixon and the usual cohorts of
prophets and sooth-sayers predicting that Russia would get the
first man on the Moon.

Finally the time arrived when the United States announced it was
sending its first men to walk on the surface of the Moon. Everyone
was tense as the Russians announced a space vehicle heading for the
Moon at the same time. Would Russia actually land a man on the Moon
before our men arrived there? Every eye and ear was glued to the
living room TV’s throughout our nation and the world –
wondering who might win this human race to the surface of the Moon.
While our men were methodically going through each step to orbit
around the Moon, then to detach the LEM and descend to the lunar
surface, the Russian vehicle mysteriously encircled the Moon. Then
all of a sudden the report came out that it must have aborted by
crashing onto the surface of the Moon.

While Neil Armstrong was taking his first infant steps on the
lunar surface -‘ one small step for man, one giant stride for
mankind’ – Buzz Aldrin was silently taking communion in the LEM
before be stepped down onto the Moon to join him. It was the first
time human beings had ever set foot on the Moon. And the nation
that accomplished this daring feat was one that still honors God,
on its coins and in the thousands of churches that enjoy freedom of
worship any where in the United States. The nation whose first
astronaut bragged, ‘I didn’t see God up there,’
didn’t beat us to the Moon. But one wonders whether there might
have been a Soviet cosmonaut in that ill-fated lunik that crashed
onto the Moon’s surface, in what might have been Russia’s
desperate attempt to beat us with a man to the Moon. They never
reveal to the world what they are doing, and when they fail they
say it ”has accomplished its mission as planned,’
while our space ventures are televised in minute detail to the
watching world.

The love of God is the beginning of wisdom. From the very first,
our forefathers established the villages and hamlets of America
with a school and a church for religious worship as the nucleus of
every community. As our nation grew and expanded, this same pattern
went right along with our community planning, even to the sprawling
cities of today.

Some may say this is only wishful thinking. But if it’s the
kind of thinking that erases ten-year leads in space programs
between our nation and our greatest atheistic rival I’m for it.
And that it has! A little religion can make the difference between
apes and men.

This week we made a Halloween visit to cousins who live on Mud
Pike up Celina, Ohio-way. The cousins don’t venture much to the
modern supermarkets. They prefer to stay home and do their cooking
and baking on the old wood range which makes the kitchen so comfy
on these Fallish days.

Onilee Miller prefers to even make their own grape nuts cereal
rather than buy them at the store. She mixes up a certain amount of
blackstrap molasses with some whole wheat flour, some very dark
brown sugar and a little sour milk, then stirs and puts it in the
oven. The result is the best tasting grape nuts cereal I ever ate.
She gave me a small jar to bring home and was it mighty good for

‘What a wonderful way to get all those health foods together
in one package blackstrap molasses, dark brown sugar, whole wheat
flour, sour milk and to be able to eat them with a little milk and
sweetening as a cereal and like it ‘real good.’ With that
kind of breakfast one ought to get over much that ails the human
race. Why not try it yourselves sometime.

Mom, it will perk up that husband of yours and give him an extra
yank in his throttle-jerking arm, and send the kids off happy and
healthy to school.

Farm Collector Magazine
Farm Collector Magazine
Dedicated to the Preservation of Vintage Farm Equipment