Some Threshing Experiences

By Staff
article image
Edgar Flowers, 83, attends his 5 HP Economy gas engine at Ohio Valley Flywheel Show, 1986. Rudy Kasteal and Hartzel converse in the background.

Told by Edgar Flowers, written, by William Flowers, Route I, Box
332 Adena, Ohio 43901.

In 1919, the Tri-County Farmers Club was formed in Eastern Ohio
consisting of 25 families living in Harrison, Jefferson, and
Belmont Counties. The purpose was to buy and operate a threshing
rig to thresh among themselves. This move was motivated because
they could not get a thresherman when their grain was ready.

They bought a new Aultman & Taylor 22/42 wood separator. The
first year it was powered by Walter Whinnery’s 15/27 Case Cross
motor tractor. The second and third year it was powered by Arch
Lough’s 15/27 Case Cross motor. After the third year they
purchased a 22/40 Case Cross motor that had been bought new by the
Short creek Township to pull the maintainer. This tractor proved
too small for the maintainer so the township bought a 25/45 Case
Cross motor.

My dad then took over the operation of the threshing rig using
the 22/40 Case and ran it until 1926. In 1926, the club decided to
dissolve as a threshing rig and started being a social club which
is still in existence. Since there was a mortgage on the outfit, my
dad bought the complete rig from the Adena Bank. He then ran the
rig for himself until he traded the 22/40 Case and the Aultman
& Taylor thresher for a new Rumely 22/36 thresher and ordered a
22/36 McCormick Deering tractor in the summer of 1929.

Before the 22/36 McCormick Deering tractor arrived, the dealer
loaned a Titan tractor to pull the new Rumely thresher. The Titan
gave my dad an awful scare that summer. It ran out of power going
up a steep hill and the brakes were unable to hold it. The engine
started running backwards back down the hill and didn’t stop
until it reached the railroad tracks next to the creek. He had been
able to steer enough to keep it straight.

In 1931, a huge wheat crop was expected and he knew that they
would never be able to get everything through the little Rumely
thresher so he purchased a new 28/48 Avery steel thresher. Also
about the same time, the Cadiz bank re-possessed a 18V22′ Ohio
stationary hay press built in 1898. My dad bought it for $50.00. He
used it for a couple of years before having it completely rebuilt.
He had bought a wrecked bailer that had the plunger busted up in an
accident to use for extra parts.

In 1932, Short creek Township decided to sell the 25/45 Case
Cross motor that they had purchased new in 1918. It was put up for
bid so my dad bid $201.00 for it. Being the highest bidder, he now
owned the second Cross Motor Case.

In 1935 the tire law came into effect in Ohio so he bought
rubber tires from Sears Roebuck for the 22/36 McCormick Deering and
bought rubber tires from three Mack trucks from a junk yard. Four
tires were used to rubberize the Avery Separator and the remainder
of the tires were used on the rear of the 25/45 Case. Two tires
went around the rear wheel of the Case once. It took twelve tires
and a lot of hard work to install them on the old Case. The Avery
Thresher, the Ohio Hay Press, and the 22/36 McCormick Deering
tractor are still in our possession. The 25/45 Case went to the war
effort during World War II except for anything that I (being a kid)
could take off of ‘Old Casey’. Several years ago a man from
Ontario, Canada advertised in the Iron-Men album for a 25/45 Case
crank. We wrote to him that we had one and the next week he came
from Canada for it.

The last of our threshing was done in 1950. My dad had gone to
work at the coal mine so I threshed six sets on our ridge using a
1948 Case D.C. that we had bought new. In 1951, we bought a John
Deere wire tie bailer and the neighbor bought a A.C. Combine so
that finished the threshing.

In 1965, my dad had a chance to fulfill a dream that he had
since a youth. He bought a 24 HP Greyhound steam engine which since
has been shown at several Ohio steam shows. My dad is 83 years old
and goes to all the steam and gas engine shows that he can. In the
last twenty years, he has acquired a collection of about 70 gas
engines which he loves to exhibit and has helped restore twenty
tractors.

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