Courtesy of Clarence E. Mitcham, Route 1, Mead, Washington 99021.
526 West High St. Portland, Indiana 47371
Portland, Ind. - The fifth annual Tri-State Gas Engine and Tractor Association's big display of antique tractors and engines will be held at the Jay County fairgrounds here Friday, Saturday and Sunday, August 21, 22, 23, 1970, and it promises to exceed the record breaking event last year. The 1969 show drew visitors from 18 states and the registration cards listed a total of 333 cities and towns represented from that area.
The 1970 show will have more than 70 old tractor and steam engines as well as more than 300 gas engines. Most of these relics of the yesteryear will be running Saturday and Sunday.
A new feature of the coming show will be an Old Fiddler's Contest to be held Sat. Aug. 22 which will feature top fiddlers of the Ohio-Indiana area. This will be the night attraction on that date.
In addition to the machinery, there will be a large display of antique cars as well as antique buggies hitched to horses on Sunday, Aug. 23. Other features include a showing of more than 500 antique watches owned by O. H. (Doc) Schwanderman, RR 3 Fort Recovery, O., two complete collections of Indian relics, old-time threshing and saw mill operation, clover hulling and daily parades.
About 1918 -- John Mitcham, Engineer with Aultman-Taylor Gas Engine and Pride of Washington Separator on the Rosenoff Farm.
The program for the three days: Fri. Aug. 21 -- Arrival of machinery and setting it up for display. Old-time threshing. Sat. Aug. 22 -- Opening of two day Antique show and Flea market with more than 40 dealers; 1:00 p.m. most gas engines and tractors in operation; threshing. 7:00 p.m. -- Old Fiddlers' Contest.
Sun. Aug. 23 -- Watch apple butter made by steam tractor. Finished product on sale about noon. Display of antique cars and buggies; all antique tractors and most of gas engines in action.
The 'old cars' come out of the exhibit area and parade, about the Reunion grounds, many carrying passengers dressed in costumes they might have worn when that model first took to the road. Nearly 100 of these vintage automobiles are exhibited by members of the Southeast Iowa Antique Car Club.
Individuals, families and groups find the welcome sign out at the midwest Old Settlers and Threshers Reunion in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa. More improvements are being made to the camp grounds this year to accommodate more campers this fall. Ground trains and buses operate through the camp area to carry visitors to the main camp area.
Home cooked dinners will be available Saturday and Sunday by the Rosary Society of Portland in the modern 4-H building. Drawings for prizes will be held each day at regular intervals.
One of the featured tractors on display will be a Wallie Bear which was made in 1912. This tractor weighs more than twelve tons, was the third of nine made 58 years ago and is the only one now in existence. Although made more than a half century ago, it has power steering, individual turn brakes, enclosed 3-speed transmission, motor with 7?' bore and 7' stroke with a 1480 displacement. The rear wheels have a 7-ft. diameter and 30-inch base. It was designed to pull eight to ten plow shares.
Other outstanding tractors will be Rumely, Oil Pull, Hart Pull, Waterloo Boy, John. Deere, Huber, Moline, Titan, Old Fordsons, McDeering, Plymouth, 2-cylinder Case, Samson and many others.
Officers of the Tri-State group of more than 200 members are Woody Turner, RR 6, Portland, president, and Morris Titus, Pendleton, Ind. is secretary-treasurer.
To the members of the Tri-State association, antiquity is the aristocracy of agricultural history and what time has consecrated and made gray with age has become a religion to these antique-tractor and engine devotees.
As usual most of the credit for the very enjoyable days in sun at Florida's Royal Steam and Gas Engine Round-up at Sarasota-Bradenton on 7 & 8th of February, 1970, was due to the great; personal efforts of Iron-Man Col. Huston Herndon who is seen here in the thick of the action - starting up the big ones.