Other Companies Tried – and Failed – to Keep Leader Tractor Rolling
The Leader crawler shown here is an 18-36 model built by Dayton-Dick Co. of Quincy, Ill., starting in 1919. It was rated for four 14-inch bottom plows and could run on gasoline, naphtha, alcohol, kerosene or distillate.
A lack of records makes it difficult to determine whether a particular Leader tractor, like this 16-32 Model N, was made by one company "like Dayton-Dick" or its successor, Dayton-Dowd. The Model N appears to have been made by both.
Though the resemblance between the Rex 12-25 and this Huber Super Four tractor isn't as strong as between the Rex and the Huber Light Four, it's still pretty similar, especially with the large front wheels.
Leader Tractor Mfg. Co. of Chagrin Falls, Ohio, also manufactured a Leader tractor beginning in 1946, just after World War II. It doesn't appear the earlier company of the same name and this one were connected, but there is too little information to tell. This particular machine belongs to Delvan Heemstra of Cass Lake, Minn.
At the same time Dayton-Dick Co. was manufacturing their crawler series, they were also making the Leader 12-18, shown above. The drive wheels were 48 inches in diameter and 12 inches wide.
File photo of a 1906 20 HP Leader steam tractor (no. 1474) built by the Ohio Tractor Mfg. Co. in Marion, Ohio, and owned by Tom Spires of Lancaster, Ohio.
File photo from November 1990 showing a 1947 Leader owned by Glenn Mitchell. If you look at the wheels on this machine as opposed to Delvan Heemstra's machine, you will see significant differences between the two. The wheels on this tractor are believed to be original equipment.