R.R. 6, Box 167, Frankfort, Indiana 46041
Among the most interesting stories I read in Gas Engine Magazine are the ones about old antique tractors, engines, or other things handed down from the original owner to the present owner. The next interesting are the stories about second owner things. My story is about one of the latter.
The rarest generally thought of John Deere Model B is the four speed, styled variety built in 1939 and 1940. There were 36,000 of them numbered 60,000 to 95,999, with the break being at number 81,599 for the last 1939 year model.
My number 75797 was built on April 25, 1939, and was shipped to the Norman J. Pusey agency at Avondale, Pennsylvania. A Mr. Buckalew of New London, Pennsylvania bought it along with a used two row cultivator Model ABG-200 on March 11, 1940 for $806.00.
Somewhere along the way Mr. Buckalew died, and his widow moved to a farm a mile north of Lincoln University, about a ten-mile move.
About April, 1948, Charlie, the hired man was plowing, and rolled the Model B down a 15 foot road bank. I saw it go down, and ran down to see if Charlie was O.K. There sat Charlie in the road beside the overturned tractor. I ran back, got my tractor and several log chains and went back to help Charlie set his tractor up. We had to drag the front end around as the bottom was towards the bank. Charlie put the brakes on. We hooked the chains onto the top part of the top wheel, and I pulled it upright. There was no damage to the tractor except a small dent in the top of the grille on one side. Charlie started up the tractor and went back to plowing again.
About 1960 to 1962 Mrs. Helen Buckalew sold this Model B and the cultivator to me for $50.00. I put better used tires on the tractor and used it.
A couple years later I broke one rear wheel in a logging accident. I could not locate a replacement wheel, so I put a pair of cast 38' wheels on it from a scrapped 1941 Model B tractor. The proper wheels for this tractor are 36' flat spoke wheels, which I would apply if I ever located a pair within driving distance, and not in the winter time.
Also somewhere along the way I bought a used power lift for $25.00 and put it on. Aside from that, the tractor is all original.
I painted it in 1972 and applied a set of John Deere decals. This tractor has never sat in a barn or a field idle. The longest time it was idle was the ten and half months it sat from being built until it was sold, new.
I take this tractor to the local show here at Frankfort each July.