Barley Threshing

By Staff
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Courtesy of G. Ross Bond, York, Pennsylvania 17100
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Courtesy of Frank Riese, Monticello, Wisconsin 53570

1011 Leicester Road, Calledonia, New York 14423

As I’ve read past issue of your magazine about old threshers
telling about the wonderful old days of big tractors and threshing
rigs, I don’t believe I have read much, if anything about
threshing bearded barley. They probably don’t want remember

I can remember very well when I was a boy of grade school age,
watching them thresh beans at the neighbors. It was in the winter
and the thresher pulled in with a Hart Parr and threshing machine
(I forget the make) and he had a tow bar made so he could pull his
model A pickup behind the machine.

They set the thresher between the mows in the barn with the
stacker out the back doors as the farmer used the pods to feed his
sheep and the belt run out the doors on the opposite side of the

Now because it was cold weather, they had the doors shut as
close to the belt and was impossible to move even with two
tractors, so we blocked up the machine and threshed right in the

It seems like it would rain a little every day and after every
rain we would have to walk around the field and turn every shock of
barley. We would thresh a little and it would rain a little and I
thought we would never get done. I nearly itched to death. So, if
you ever see me itch a little, it’s not because I’m dirty
or have bugs, it’s because I’m an old barley thresher.

Pictured is a pumping outfit in the early 1900’s located at
Potters Lake in Pike County, Pennsylvania. It consists of a 6 Hp.
Otto engine and Denning pump was used to furnish water for an
estate. The outfit was not used the last 25 years and is in good
condition. It was moved and is now with a collection of gas

This is my Fairbanks Morse type ‘Y’, 50 H.P., 2 cycle
Diesel, 1 cylinder oil engine with friction clutch, 49 inch drive
pulley and water pump. This engine has driven a grist mill for a
number of years and is in very good condition. It uses about 3
gallons of oil per hour under full load and about 1 gallon idling.
It can be seen at Rock River Threshermans Park on Route 51 north of
Janesville, Wisconsin.

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