Westward Ho, Was A-OK 1990 Case Heritage Expo Report


| March/April 1991



Case steam power

'Brig' Brigham Co-Chairman, Communications, P.O. Box 5128 Bella Vista, AR 72714-0128

Gordon Fullmer, as specialist with Case-West, gets some hands-on experience with Case steam power in the cab of the 110, under the watchful eye of steam engineer Dale Richardson.

I'm not sure what was best about the 4th Annual International J.I. Case Heritage Exposition. Was it the sight of Joe Richardson's 1913 110 HP steam traction engine from Orofino, Idaho, parked nose to nose with the Case-IH 9150 with Stan Miner's 1/3-scale model of a 65 HP Case steamer out of Howell, Michigan, parked in the shadow of these behemoths? Or of Alan Schurman from Ridgefield, Washington, standing in a cloud of chaff as he fed sheaves of grain to his old 1880's Case apron thresher with power supplied by Case No. 711, perhaps the oldest of old steam traction engines owned by the family of the late Willis E. Smith, his son Robert (of Eugene, Oregon) at the throttle? Or of young Jeremy Johnson of Portland, Oregon, on the second weekend when he tooled up to the Case Heritage exhibit area aboard his newly restored 1949 SC (he and Dad worked night and day to get that tractor ready!)? Or of Foundation Director Neil Heesacker's son, Bruce, driving his dad's great old 15-27 Case Cross motor to a full-course run in the tractor pull, with flags (U.S., Case Heritage and Case-IH) flying; and of Neil Heesacker, the dad, breathless and almost speechless (a first for Neil) in his excitement over his son's achievement? Or of meeting people like Bill Wallner of Cave Junction, Oregon, who had details to convey about an old Case car; Leonard Case, who brought his 'Case-owned Case,' a 1934 C tractor, all the way from Duval, Washington; and Joe Madesh (J.I. Case ret., who lived up to his billing as the 'Harry Kline of the West'); and Ed Gerber, whose vintage LA is not the usual tractor it's personalized with PTO, power steering, a homemade cab and a coat of 'northwest power orange' paint? Or of Bob Waechter unveiling his almost completed 2-inch scale model of a steam traction engine he once worked with decades ago at the Bradley (Foundation Director Dan Bradley, his dad and Don's brothers) Family's sawmill in Montana?Or of Kurt Spegal (who is basically a JD Green man) driving his son Bryan's 1942 LA in the parade with Sauder Farm's 1870 Case engine No. 25 from Archbold, Ohio, in tow Or of Walter Spreeman, a Case legend, at the helm of another legend, the 110 Case engine? Or of Perry Johnson, making his first visit to an Expo cruising the grounds on the last Sunday in the driver's seat of Monte Shelton's 1913 Case touring car out of Portland, Oregon, vowing not to miss the next one and tooling by Stan Sill, a regular visitor to Expos from Rockford, Ohio, as Stan was loading up his 1924 Case roadster for another circuit of Antique Power land? Or of Tom Fenton playing his violin in the Case Heritage building as some extra added special entertainment for spectators watching the handcrafted models in his farm display go about the task of threshing 'in miniature'? Or of Dick Van Dyke, aboard his 1939 Case C tractor demonstrating Glen Watts Case 'Tumblebug' plow Or of Foundation Director Carl Tuttle's well-traveled, smooth-running 9-30 HP Case steam engine from Michigan working its heart out on the belt powering a Case threshing machine? Or of the pride in the eyes of Tony Stetson and his son, Jim, as many of the Case tractors the Stetsons have restored for themselves and others in the Pacific Northwest in recent years gathered for a mass showing to an appreciative, international audience of Expo-goers? Or Dottie Parsons, a veteran gatherer of old Case equipment and workhorse at vintage tractor rallies in New Zealand, soaking up the sights and scenes of a very special Case event in the United States with her video camera? Or, Ace Wischstadt from Vista, California, explaining how he made the beautiful wooden patterns, on display, in the process of building his nearly completed scale model of the 60 HP steam engine he runs at the annual ag-heritage events at Vista, California.

Case Heritage Foundation President W.C. 'Chady' Atteberry presents the Host Committee Plaque to Larry Leek, president of Antique Power land. Pat Atteberry (left) and Linda Leek look on.

No, as great as they were, they weren't what was best at Case Expo #4!

Not even the tremendous crowds of people who flocked to the Expo/Great Oregon Steam up in spite of record-tumbling hot weather on both weekends were what was best about this event.