Antique Engine Gifts Plant Seed for New Generation

Read about how a chance encounter and a gift of a 1914 2-1/2hp Hired Hand inspired Jason Peterson to start his own gas engine collection with his kids.

| February/March 2020

Trent Peterson with his Fuller & Johnson pump engine. Photos of the Fuller & Johnson engine are courtesy of Casey Peterson.

Fate has a funny way of bringing people together. Glen Sladek and Jason Peterson, for instance, might never have met. But when Glen got lost on trails near Markville, Minnesota, he stumbled onto Jason’s cabin. Jason was there that day and offered help.

“In conversation, we started talking about what we do for a hobby, and we discovered that we were both into old engines,” Jason says.

Glen had acquired an engine collection in an unusual way. “He had a friend who gave him his engines before he died. The man told Glen he could give the engines to people who were interested in the hobby and wanted to preserve it, but he didn’t want him to sell them and make a profit off them.”

As the two men talked, Jason – a tractor-trailer mechanic – learned that he and Glen had other interests in common besides engines, like hunting and fishing. “It developed into a good friendship over the years,” Jason says.

The Gift of a Hired Hand

Over time, that chance meeting has acted like a ripple in the water, helping expand the engine hobby to a new generation. When Jason visited Glen in Hutchinson, Minnesota, during the winter of 2004, Glen brought a gift: a 1914 2-1/4hp Hired Man gasoline engine built by Associated Manufacturers Co., Waterloo, Iowa. But the engine wasn’t for Jason.


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