2734 Chaffee St., National City, California 92050
Probably the real beginning of the third semi-annual meeting of Branch 9 (Southern California) of the Early Day Gas Engine & Tractor Association really began several months ago as the officers met to plan activities, set time for events and coordinate activities with the Santee Lakes Festival committee. This gas-up was held in conjunction with the Santee Lakes Festival which is an annual affair at Santee, Calif. Santee (near El Cajon and San Diego, Calif.) is becoming world-noted for its unique system of reclaiming sewage water for further use. The four lakes are filled with water from the sewer system which has been purified and filtered to make it once more clear and safe for use.
The apparent beginning of the event, however, must have been the Saturday morning, June 27, when Roy Bodin cranked up his John Deere D model and hitched it to an ancient cast-iron wheeled trailer. On the trailer was loaded a 'stirring' plow, and it looked, indeed, like Roy was going out to plow up the North Forty. Really, though, he was headed for the parade up Carlton Hills Boulevard. All in all, it promised to become quite a show.
After the parade, all the old (and quite a few young) gas-bugs gathered equipment and arranged it for display in an area close beside the upper lake.
There was Clair Tietsort from Santee with a fine display of pumps, pump-jacks, engines, a cream separator, and even an unidentified engine pumping water with an Aermotor pump-jack, Many of the old-timers gathered from time to time to try to identify Clair's engine.
Al Kreuger was there from Long Beach with some fine engines including a 1? hp. Lansing and a 1? hp. Hercules.
Jim Gibson and Don Przybylski showed several nice items including an 8-cycle Aermotor.
A machine which generated considerable interest was the West Coast engine pumping water to the delight of Ed Miskovsky, Allen Carroll and Bill May, who collaborated in bringing fire from the old snorters exhaust stack. It has serial No. 0, and those in the know say it is the prototype for these engines manufactured from 1904 to 1906 in San Diego. Rusty Johnson, one of our ancient friends, says he irrigated with one of these engines for several years at San Ysidro about 1910.
One could just go on and on with interesting notes of happenings and incidents at this gas-up. The enthusiasm evident here on every hand was contagious. Some sixty pieces of equipment and engines were on display by Saturday noon and more were to arrive later. It was noted that about 150 signed the roster kept by the ladies of the Branch -- without whom, we might add, the show would not have progressed so smoothly as it did. Who could forget the scene when Ruth Molamphy and Mickey May brought sandwiches for their heroes, only to find the scoundrels, missing from the show? They almost had to auction them to the highest bidder! Let me hasten to add, however, that John and Bill showed up and did justice to the food just in time.
Dick Hamp of San Jose, California, poses beside his Aermotor 8 cycle engine at the June meeting of the Early Day Gas Engine and Tractor Association meeting at Santee, California.
This is a busy scene as Joe Whipple of Santee, California, helps his dad, Jim, sawing slabs from an oak log with an Ottawa drag saw.
Here is an expression of joy as Leo Coss has succeeded in firing off Mickey May's 1 hp. Mogul at the June meeting of Branch 9 (Southern California) Early Day Gas Engine and Tractor Association.
Then how about Mike Ashbeck's Barnes pump chugging away hour after hour dumping a hefty stream into a sluice box? And Bill May, our genial president, calmly popping about the area on Roy Bodin's John Deere model B? And the ? scale steamer, owned by Merle Shipley of Cabazon, brought to the show and displayed by Weyland Worden of La Crescenta. It was a real attraction and was demonstrated pulling several of the pieces of equipment. Those steamers, even small ones, sure do burn the wood.
Jim Bove, with son Steven as official sheller and grinder, shelled and ground enough corn to feed a feed-lot full of shoats.
Dell Grupe, of Culver City, displayed a beautifully conceived model Galloway pulling a buzz saw. In the same group was a model stamping mill, pounding away crushing rock to dust.
Almost as a footnote to the fine gas-engine meet of June 27 and 28, quite a number of the Southern California Branch met at Rube Nelson's in Escondido August 1st and 2nd and helped Rube with his threshing. This involved firing up Rube's Russell 25 steamer, hitching it to a Case separator and then threshing wheat like some can remember when we were kids back in Iowa! Notable besides Rube (the Nebraska Swede) who ramrodded the project, were Al Pfeil, engineer, and Marion Murphy, Separator man. Al is 77 and Marion is 79, and they really showed the youngsters how it is done.
Not all of the engines were running at Portland's Tri-State Meet in August. This IHC engine had a slight problem. If you look what is sitting by the oiler you will know the reason (slightly bent valve). The engine is owned by Byron & Doug Hull of Trotwood, Ohio.
The gentleman pictured is Mr. George Campbell of San Diego, who was associated with the development of the West Coast engine shown. Also identified in the picture are Ed Miskowsky and Allen Carroll who helped put the engine in running condition for the show at Santee, California.