8th Annual EAGAN Steam Threshing Bee

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1511 Eglehart Avenue, St. Paul, Minnesota 55104

September 11th and 12th, 1976 were busy days at the George H. Ohmann farm. The Eighth Annual Eagan Threshing Bee was in full progress and it was also threshing time at the Ohmann farm. A time when two settings of grain, well stacked by veteran farmer and thresher, George H. Ohmann, Sr., would fall a victim to one or both of the 36 inch threshing machines equipped with wing feeders.

Lumber sawing was in progress both days with Reuben Boettcher running George H. Ohman Jr's. 30 HP Minneapolis and Jim Mollenhauer with Mr. Ohmann's 50 HP Case furnishing the power. The large supply of logs kept the saw busy most of the time both days of the show.

Karl Marquart sawed shingles. He is the owner of a large collection of small gas engines along with several gas and oil tractors. One of these is a 45 HP IHC Mogul of which he is quite proud.

Lathe sawing and feed grinding were demonstrated. Steam engines used to operate the threshing machines were the 65 HP Case owned and operated by Ted Knack; an 18 HP Advance Rumely operated by owner, Vic Wenzel of Rosemount, Minnesota and George H. Ohmann Jr's. 5 HP Case operated by Jim Mollenhauer.

Heading the gas tractor list, and also taking its turn on the 36 inch cylinder threshers, was George H. Ohmann Sr's. 30-60 Aultman and Taylor gas tractor. This engine is in perfect shape, and needless to say, it is Mr. Ohmann's pride and joy.

Tractor plowing was demonstrated in a nearby field. Tractors owned by George H. Ohmann, Jr., include a 39-57 Minneapolis gas tractor, 17-30 Minneapolis, an Oliver 99 tractor, a two-cylinder John Deere, a 22-36 McCormick Deering, two F 20 Farmalls, one with cultivator and also a gas crawler tractor, a 10-20 McCormick Deering, all in good running order.

George Jr. has a half-dozen grain threshers ranging in size from a 20 inch cylinder to a 28 inch size, in addition to two large machines, one is a 36 inch Minneapolis and the other is a 36 inch Red River Special. Another thresher in the collection is a wood constructed McCormick Deering, 22 inch, one of a very few in existence.

In the line of farm machinery, a corn shredder, at least two grain binders in running order, mowers, rakes, hay tedders, hay loaders, gand and sulky plows; a Hero fanning mill and a feed grinder, along with many other units comprise a collection reaching over the years.

The small gas engine exhibit showing single cylinder gasoline engines, some manufactured at the turn of the century or before, now fully restored, always draw a share of attention at the shows.

George H. Ohmann, Jr. has twenty gas engines ranging from 1? HP to 7 HP.

Betty and Bob Holler of Richfield, Minnesota, members of the Early Day Gas Engine and Tractor Association, St. Croix Valley, Branch I, were showing five small engines. They also had a rope machine, a corn sheller and some toy steam traction engines. One engine they have is a 2 HP Miller gas engine built in 1895.

David Irey Of Minneapolis had five gas engines; three Fairbanks Morse; one Root and Vandervoort and one John Deere.

Steve Helkenn of Farmington, Minnesota brought a 1? HP John Deere and a 2? HP Sandow on trucks. He also had a 1? HP and a 2? HP, both McCormick Deering.

Dale Lefine had a 2? HP Ingeco and a 2 HP Lindsay. H. J. Pearson of New Brighton, Minnesota brought a 1? HP IHC engine. Les Goetzke of West St. Paul showed a 2 HP Fairbanks Morse, a 2? HP aircooled engine, a 3 HP John Deere, an Economy 1? HP engine and a Briggs-Stratton washing machine engine. He also has a Briggs-Stratton lawnmower engine with the flywheel on the bottom.

Wayne Palmer of Menominee, Wisconsin, a member of the Early Day Gas Engine Club brought a 1930 Maytag washing machine and a Dexter washing machine used in the early 1900's. He also had a butter churn and a butter square cutter. He had a bicycle of the 1900 vintage. He also had a tray of 12 souvenir John Deere tractors which were an exact replica of the original tractors.

Al Vonbank and son of Jordan, Minnesota were using a gas engine to operate a drag-saw cutting narrow blocks from a cedar log. They make red cedar wishing wells and do ornamental work using cedar.

Daryl Gulden had a 6 HP Galloway, a 3 HP John Deere and an Aermotor gas engine.

Duey Anderson and Dave Carlson had a Stover 2 HP, a Fuller and Johnson 2? HP, a John Deere 2?, and an IHC rated both 3 and 5 HP. They also had a Ward's engine and 3 Maytag engines. They had a two cycle engine they credited to Toro.

They brought a tractor they built using a 2? HP Hercules engine.

It is always a pleasure to meet people we have become acquainted with at the shows.

Gene Roggeman was on hand with Ted Knack and Ted's 65 HP Case. Mr. Roggeman built a model steam traction engine- more than twenty years ago when there were very few model engines in existence.

Art Uhl was assistant separator man at the show. I renewed acquaintance with Vernon Smith who operated a Russell engine for Art Andersen at the Eagan Show in 1975. He said he grew up around steam engines. Among the spectators were Mike Kovic of Jordan, Minnesota, his brother George, and Willard Boettcher of Jordan, Ralph Truax of St. Paul, a former steam engineer in North Dakota, Rudy Clemmensen who takes pictures, Ray Lins of the Jordan show, and Ruben Boettcher of Jordan who was operating the 30 HP Minneapolis.

James, 'Jimmy', Stewart of Minnesota City, Minnesota came to the show as he has other years. He likes to join in on the good conversation of the threshing shows. Mr. Stewart has quite a line of machinery including both corn and grain binders threshing machines and tractors. One of the latest additions was A Rumely Oil Pull tractor and a 20 x 42 Belle City thresher.

Mr. George H. Ohmann, Sr. told me his father purchased his farm in 1894, the year George Sr. was born. He grew up on the farm and later became the owner and operator. It is the home where Mr. Ohmann and his wife, now deceased, raised their family.

Today, Mr. Ohmann and his son, Marvin, operate the farm. Oats and soy beans are the main crops. He enjoys riding the binder and he is an experienced grain stacker.

Although the 1976 show was successful, the Ohmanns are looking forward to a better show in 1977.