Tennessee Valley Show Tops 300 Tractors

Kerosene engine

Kerosene engine runs either way. Even I can start one of these!

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P.O. Box 125 Eaglesville, Tennessee 37060

The Tennessee Valley Pioneer Power Association hosted their fourth annual show on September 7th and 8th, 1991. The weather was beautiful in the South and all the members had their fingers crossed that this would be the year that our show would top 300 tractors. The final count proved successful as 305 antique tractors were tallied. Not bad for an area that still used mules in the 1950s!!

Along with the tractor show, the gas engine show was bigger and better than ever. Exhibitors from several states displayed engines of yesteryear. The ladies Home Demonstration Club showed off their talents of years gone by and everyone enjoyed the crafts that were for sale.

A Parade of Power was featured both days as exhibitors paraded their tractors in front of the grandstand area. This year two-way radios were used to help the announcer describe the entries as they paraded by the grandstand. The Flag tractor on Saturday's opening ceremonies was Powell Smith's W40 McCormick-Deering which is also featured in the 1992 DuPont calendar. Sunday's flag tractor was a Rumely Six owned by our local Allis Chalmers collector, W. C. Arnold.

Slow races were held in three classes this year. The three classes are: early antiques built through 1939, late antiques built from 1940 through 1952, and classics built from 1953 through 1960. This is the fairest way we have found to conduct the slow races, since later tractors tend to be geared slower than earlier ones.

The hand cranking contest is always a real crowd pleaser, as the contestants jump from their seats to start the tractor, then mount the tractor again to race to a finish line a few yards away. It's a lot easier to judge which tractor crosses a line first, than which one starts first and is more exciting to watch! Safety inspectors always recheck every tractor to make sure that it is in neutral before being started. They do not, however, remind the contestant to turn on the switch, which has proven to be the downfall of many embarrassed crankers!

Probably the highlight of the two day event, at least for the parents and grandparents, is the children's pedal tractor races and pulls. Classes are set up by age as the 3, 4, 5, and 6 year old children race and the 7,8,9, and 10 year old children pull a miniature sled with a mechanical weight box just like the big time pullers. There are so many video cameras around that it is impossible to see without being in someone's way! The final event both days is our antique tractor pull. On Saturday the early antiques and the late antique classes are held. This year 130 tractors were entered for the Saturday event. On Sunday 105 tractors pulled in the combination antique and classic pull.

Among the rarest of the rare tractors exhibited this year was a complete Barber Greene loader, which is factory mounted on a modified John Deere 50 chassis. Are there any more complete units out there? Not even Expo 11 had a complete unit! One of our goals is to display as many sets of tractors together as possible. The '30' series set of John Deeres always get a lot of attention and the owners even parade them as a set.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who made our show possible. It sure takes a lot of time, and nowadays money, to host a show of this size. But when we look around on show days and see all the restored antique farm machinery that played such a role in our country's past we know the effort was worth it.

Come and join us next September 12th and 13th for our fifth annual show and reunion, and be a part of one of the Southeast's largest exhibitions of antique farm machinery. Our show is held in Eagleville, Tennessee which is 30 miles south of Nashville on Hwy. 41-A.