Founding the Pioneer Gas Engine Association Inc

By Staff
article image
PHOTO: DON GRILLCY
Here is a picture of me in the cab of the 20-40 H.P. Case Tractor. The Pioneer Gas Engine Association is dedicated to preserving machines of this vintage. Courtesy of Mr. Don Grillcy, Deering, North Dakota.

After attending several of the steam reunions in nearby states,
a few local engine buffs began discussing the formation of a club in New
York. In 1960 Bob Marshall called several of us together and we
formed the New York Steam Engine Assn., Inc. Wallis Wood was named
first president, Lester Norris Vice Pres., Claude Abbert Secty.,
and myself as Treasurer.

Several locations were considered for our first reunion and it
was decided to hold it here at the Mendon Pioneer Museum grounds in August of
1961. I would have liked the reunions to have continued here, but
the majority rules, and when the directors decided to go elsewhere
for 1962, I then formed the ‘Pioneer Gas Engine Assn.’ and
began plans for the first Gas show to be held in the east, on
August 3-4-5, 1962.

In December of 1961 in the company of the following, Fred
Wolfsberger, J.B. Hanggi, H. Hanggi, D. Schoff and Harold
Whitbeck, I called a meeting to order and we formed the Pioneer Gas
Engine Assn. We held our first reunion here at the Museum grounds
in Aug. of 1962. The general public was slow in learning that there
were two engine shows the first year, however enough passed thru
the gates to keep us in the black and we have continued to gain by
more than one third each year since. After our first show we
received many inquiries from prospective members, and at our
second or 1963 show we compiled a list of such people and invited
them to our third annual meeting held on October 27th, here at the
Museum grounds.

We congratulate Rev. Ritzman on his foresight in publishing a
magazine devoted to our hobby and predict it will grow with each
issue and become a ‘must for every gas engine hobbyist in the
very near future.

At that meeting we elected a new slate of officers, drew up a
constitution and by laws and filed incorporation papers so we could
sell memberships in the association.

From a handful at the beginning we have grown to a membership
well over 200 dedicated and sincere people who are actively
interested in the preservation and display of the old time machines
which played such a part in the development of our great
nation.

The officers of this association have been as follows, 1961-2
Harry L. Schoff, Pres., Fred Wolfesberger, V. Pres., Dorothy
Schoff, Secty. -Treas., J.B. Hanggi, H. Hanggi, Harold Whit beck,
Norman Steffen and Willet Moran Jr., Directors.

1962-3 Fred Wolfsberger, Pres, Willet Moran Jr., V. Pres., Harry
Schoff, Secty.-Treas., Dorothy Schoff, J.B. Hanggi, H. Hanggi,
Harold Whitbeck and Norman Steffen, Directors. 1963-4 Don Luteyn,
Pres., Abram Johnson, V. Pres., Martha Abbert, Secty, Harry L.
Schoff, Treas., Homer Prudom, George King, Clarence Stil-son, Larry
Briggs, Dave Shearns, George Knab, Robert Converse, Carl Campbell
and Paul K. Smith, Direc, 1964-5 Don Luteyn, Pres., Harry L.
Schoff, V. Pres, Dorothy Smith, Secty., Martha Abbert, Treas., Paul
Luckman, Charles Rolfe and Richard Wood new directors.

This article was compiled especially for the new Gas Engine
Magazine, and the officers and members of the Pioneer Gas engine
assn., Inc., extend a cordial welcome to every one interested in
preserving early engines to become a member of our association.

Gas Engine Magazine
Gas Engine Magazine
Preserving the History of Internal Combustion Engines