Massachusetts Club Seeks New Home


| October/November 2000



In June of 1976, six engine and machinery 'bugs' got together on a porch to discuss formation of an antique engine and machinery club. They decided that day to form a club and call it The Pulleys & Flywheels Association. The six founders, Bruce Dexter, Ellsworth Songer, Doug Johnson, Roland Jean, Ed Berquist, and Herman Manson, made their first public showing in July at the New Salem Old Home Days Show. The exhibit was a smash hit.

The club grew to 14 members in merely two months and voted to change the name to Central Massachusetts Steam, Gas, and Machinery Association (CMSGMA). After successfully exhibiting at many fairs and shows, the club found a larger home at the Orange Airport in Orange, Massachusetts. Held every year on the last weekend in June, the show has grown over the years to the limits of the available field. But now, CMSGM has a unique opportunity to purchase a parcel of land to have a permanent home and to take the evergrowing show to the next level.

The new land is an old farm located in Pelham, Massachusetts. About 15 miles south of Orange, the new location has easy access off a state highway and is centrally located in the middle of the state. There are about 40 acres of cleared land, and 40 acres of woodland, giving a total of 80 acres.

Our goal for the new property is to create a type of show that is generally not available in New England. Most shows in New England, including the current show at Orange, have lots of engine and tractor displays brought in by exhibitors, but few if any permanent displays of larger equipment running, such as shingle mills, lumber mills, and the like. Currently there is no space for working tractor displays, such as plowing demonstrations and tractor pulls.

Well, we plan to change that. Our new show will have those things, and many more. There is a lot more we can do when the club owns the property! We hope to have tractor games, tractor pulls, demonstrations, and a vintage line-shaft machine shop (we were just given a bunch of equipment to make this happen!) We also hope to eventually have buildings for large engine and other antique machinery displays. The club also owns two large steam engines. We hope someday to build a structure that can allow these engines, and perhaps others, to run on steam again.

We will offer greatly upgraded food service, as well as entertainment. Space for a flea and craft fair will ensure that family members with interests other than 'old iron' will have plenty to do.