The Faithful Old 15-30

| January/February 1985

Greensburg, Kansas

R.E. Burnett drilling 50th wheat crop with 1929

McCormick-Deering 15-30 (22-36 HP)s, 1928 IHC 16-10 drills, wooden-box.

Gas Engine Magazine has told the stories of many farmers' recollections of farming and the machines they used back in the 'good old days'. This story is about a farmer who carried the good old days into the present with him, and made it pay off. It is a tribute to a Kansas farmer named Ralph Burnett and to the machines he used to make his living, machines which are now being collected and restored by readers of GEM.

On July 18, 1979, a south-central Kansas farmer named Ralph Burnett died of cancer in a hospital at Greensburg, Kansas. He was well known throughout the area for being a highly successful farmer-stockman, a friend and good neighbor, and an avid basketball fan. But it was something else that he did that marked him as an unusual individual. He had the ability to make his farm enterprise show a very respectable profit when other area farmers were feeling the effects of low farm prices. This fact in itself isn't as unusual as his method. When he died in July of 1979, a farm tractor that he bought new in 1929 was still in service on his farm!

Ralph Burnett grew up on a sandhill farm northeast of Mullinville, Kansas. As a boy, he and his brothers worked their sandhill ground with horses, listers, sleds, raised their own feed, and made their own fun.