HP Western engine

Donald G. Beach

Content Tools

2734 Chaffee St., National City, California 92050

The year just past has produced it's share of joy and hardships for most of us, but in retrospect it must be counted as a time well spent for those associated with the Early Day Gas Engines and Tractors. We (some three hundred seventy-one at latest count) have joined together in 'adults at play' grand style a number of times. These include the International Date Festival at Indio, California in Feb., the Antelope Valley Fair in Lancaster, California in Sept., the Tropico Gold Camp event near Rosamond, California in March. The largest event of the year again was the Santee Lakes Festival at Santee, California in June. Our Fall meeting was at the Orange County Fairgrounds in October and there were other activities which deserve much comment also. The Swap Meet, held at Al Krueger's place in Long Beach was a notable attraction. The Hemet Fair and the Orange County Fair drew large crowds of people eager to view these strange snorting, hissing, popping and slushing iron monsters from an earlier day.

All-in-all it has been a busy year with many of the members of Branch 9 involved in a wide variety of club activities. As we hope the accompanying pictures will show, we performed the usual stunts involving our old iron and equipment, such as pumping water (great quantities of it in some instances, like when Wes Hamilton and Jim Wyse fired up the Clark four-banger and belted it to a 6-inch pump to squirt water half way across Santee lake). We ground enough corn to feed all the chickens that are left in San Diego County with some left over to export to Logan County, Nebraska! The girls baked corn bread and iron-pot beans in the Country Kitchen enough for half a dozen overage threshing crews -- and passed out samples to all those fortunate people who chanced to pass that way when the oven was opened. Old fashioned ice cream, frozen with ice and salt and turned by hand, was another delicacy enjoyed by a large and appreciative group of youngsters (to age 83).

An activity which has received too little attention has been one of the busiest at all the events. This is the publications stand set up and operated by John Molamphy. Perhaps it would be more accurate to state that the operation was by Ruth Molamphy and Ida Ashbeck -- as John seems to be frequently off chasing something or other at the far reaches of the fair grounds!

Perhaps it would be well to make a few comments in regard to specifics of some of the shows we have been involved in this past year. At the Santee Lakes Festival, which is located in Santee, near El Cajon, California we counted ninety-one engines, ten tractors, four model engines, and fifty-seven pieces of operating equipment. The 5th Fall Show at the Fair Grounds in Costa Mesa, California attracted sixty-five gas engines, two steam engines, fourteen tractors, six pieces of tractor equipment, and thirty pieces of other operating equipment. As the Spring Show was held in conjunction with the Santee Lakes Festival, the Festival crowd of several thousand people helped to add to the old engine festivities. The Fall Show was held after the Orange County Fair, at which we sponsored a display, this giving us some publicity which attracted a large crowd of spectators -- some of whom became so interested that they joined the club and started collecting old iron on their own account.

Top left - 50 HP Western engine restored and exhibited by Greg Johnson of Anaheim,; top right- Heider tractor by Rock Island Plow Co.restored and exhibited by Eric Rosehau from Villa Park; bottom left -10 HP Fairbanks-Morse restored and exhibited by Al Krueger of Long Beach and bottom right photo is an oil well steam engine, circa 1872, restored and exhibited by Jim Bove of Los Angeles - all cities are in California. Pictures by Greg Johnson. - California Early Day Gas & Engine 9 Tractor Assn.

We feel not enough has been said and shown to make folks aware of our Early Day Country Kitchen. The ladies of the Early Day Gas Engine and Tractor Association take great delight in their accomplishments in the kitchen. We men, who stand to reap the benefits of these culinary arts, applaud and encourage them in their efforts. The line of credits for activities would be far too long to list, but a representative group might be appropriate. A quilting bee has been held at least two times, and the quilt then raffled off to a lucky winner. When we peer into the kitchen we may find Beverly Krueger baking cinnamon rolls (yum, yum!), Betty May baking light bread, Ida Ashbeck cooking ham and beans or chicken and dumplings, while Martha Coss churns butter, Marge Hennen bakes muffins (delicious!) and Helen Tietsort and her group of women operate the quilting frame and treadle sewing machine. Some of the names we recall in this activity are Mrs. Freiling, Mrs. Bartel and two or more whose names have escaped us.

The popcorn popping machine brought by Carl Bergman has been attended in beautiful and gourmet fashion by Diane Helwig and Alta Bergman.

We noted quite a large group of first-time exhibitors this year -- a sure sign that the hobby is growing in numbers. Some names that come to mind are Warren Pelnarsch, of Lindhall, California, with his F & J 2-1/2 hp hothead; Patrick Copplin of Downey, showing his Sears 1915 7 hp Economy pulling a buzz saw; Jack McGibbon of Lancaster showed a 1-1/2 hp F-M pulling a Fairbanks-Morse air compressor. At Costa Mesa we became acquainted with Mr. Bartel showing a beautiful pair of Stovers, one C-T 1 and the other C-T 2. Emil Payne of Santa Ana appeared this year also showing a 2-cycle Wade drag saw.

Let's Look To 1974!! More of the same . . . The Spring Show in June.......Perhaps a Threshing Bee, the Fall Show in Costa Mesa and several Fan-Events make this an exciting prospect.

This picture was taken in 1923 at Vulcan, Alberta. The Separator is a 23' Aultmann Taylor which was significant for its 'Starved Rooster' emblem. It was powered by a 15-27 H.P. Case gas engine. This outfit was owned by W. H. Jurney & Sons.

Top left pictures shows us Joe and Jim Whipple entertaining with their drag saw operation. They live in Lakeside, California and are here sawing slabs for the spectators at Santee Festival. Top center is John Molamphy from Long Beach appears pleased at the results of his restoration efforts as he compressed air with this 1917 Schramm at the International Date Festival in Indio, California. Top right shows some happy swappers exchanging goodies at the Swap Meet held at Long Beach at Al Krueger's place.

Bottom left - two happy modelers observe the results of months of painstaking work as they watch these miniatures pop and saw wood. Del Grupe and Don Rothgarn proudly display a Model f-M [1 3/4' x 1 7/8'] and a Model Witte [3/4' x 1-1/2']. Center shot is Lee Stephens of Costa Mesa and his cross-mounted Case tractor in tiptop operating condition and it is a fine attraction at any Gas-Up. This time it is at the Santee Lakes Festival. At bottom right - Jack and Bill Arbuckle are justly proud of their neat little Model T Speedster. They took a price in the Antique Auto Show at Santee Festival. They also showed a pump rig driven by a Hercules engine at the engine show. Photos - Don Beach.