Gas Engine Magazine

Edwards River Antique Engine Association

By Staff

North Henderson, Illinois 61466

The fourth annual show of the Edwards River Antique Engine
Association was held on the weekend of June 17-18, 1989. The show
was held at a new location: the New Windsor Rodeo Park in New
Windsor, Illinois, which provided plenty of exhibit and parking

The feature tractor for 1989 was a 1936 John Deere A owned by
Harold ‘Shorty’ Wadham of New Windsor, Illinois, one of the
charter members of the Edwards River Club. The tractor is
completely restored, repainted, and runs like new. Shorty can
always be found wiping the dust off and polishing his tractor to
make that green paint shine. He enjoys taking his tractors to local
parades to show them off.

This year’s feature engine, a 5 HP Fairbanks-Morse owned by
John Brodd of Moline, Illinois, is a very nicely restored and
excellent running engine. John plans to display this and other
engines he owns on the bed of a 1 1/2 ton Reo truck of the
1940’s vintage.

There were over 80 engines on display. The sound of engines at
work could be heard as they labored away doing various
demonstrations. This brought back many memories of days gone by to
the older folks and an interesting sight to the young.

We had over 75 tractors displayed by club members as well as
other antique tractor buffs of the area. The tractors paraded on
both afternoons as the president’s wife’s tractor ran out
of gas and needed a tow. Luckily, a spare tractor and chain were
handy. Spectators watched from the bleacher seats as many tractors
paraded through the rodeo arena with the announcer having a comment
about each one.

The park provided nice shade for several flea market exhibitors
with a wide variety of items ranging from tractor parts to
priceless antiques of all sorts. In one area the corn sheller was
operating for a crowd, while in another the steam engine powered by
a sawmill for still more spectators. Many of the tractor owners
tested their horsepower on one of the two fans.

Saturday noon was the showdown for tractor pullers as the Bald
Bluff Antique Tractor Association provided the sled and rules for
an antique tractor pull. The pull was a huge success as there were
over 115 hookups. Spectators could watch the pull from the ample
seating around the rodeo arena.

The New Windsor Rodeo Association kept all of our tummies full
with meals ranging from a pancake breakfast to pork chop
sandwiches. Good ole’ home cookin’!!

Sunday afternoon the children had their turn hooking up to the
sled at the kiddie tractor pull. Many children participated with
each one receiving a prize.

Next it was time for the games. We had the coverall race and the
slow race with many participants. Afterwards was the cooling off
period as the water pitcher race found many contestants getting
wet! The finale of the weekend was the raffle drawings with prizes
of a very colorful, handmade afghan, a stained glass lamp with many
popular engine companies’ logos inscribed in it, and a pedal
tractor and trailer.

The Edwards River Antique Engine Association Show for 1990 will
be held at the same location in New Windsor, located west of 1-74
on Route 17. The dates for the shows are June 23-24- Hope to see
you there!

  • Published on Jun 1, 1990
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