Report on a Unique engine & Horse Show


| October/November 1986



8 HP International sideshaft engine

Nicely restored 8 HP International kerosene/gas/alcohol sideshaft engine owned James McCurry of Lincolnton, N.C.

425 Shuford Circle Drive Newton, N.C. 28658

Antique engine buffs who attend shows regularly know that there are enough of them around to keep a yesteryear enthusiast on the go the year round. One particular show we've visited in the past two years can be called unique, because it is one of a kind. It is a show of engines and other farm machinery, and of a herd of more than thirty beautiful blond Belgian horses.

This unique showing of horsepower and horse flesh comes alive each mid-June on a fascinating Belgian horse farm called Windmill Acres, operated by Edd and Velma Sigmon near Newton, North Carolina, an hour's drive south of the Blue Ridge Parkway and Grandfather Mountain. The Sigmons breed and work a magnificent herd of Belgian horses the year around, and give the proud and powerful but gentle horses opportunities to perform in fairs, parades, and other events throughout the eastern United States.

Horse power

Big Edd, as he's affectionately called by his many friends, appears to be as interested in old engines and other farm machinery as he is in horses, and has put together a collection of alluring items that many collectors regard as outstanding.

Edd has gas engines that range in size from Maytags to large Internationals; steam engines that range from scale models to a 200-horsepower Corliss; an assortment of gasoline tractors; a fleet of steam traction engines, including the only existing operating four-wheel drive model (Lansing), plus the last steam engine to come out of the famous Frick Company plant. In addition to machines in sheds, there is a whole field full of early types of horsedrawn reapers, corn cutters, plows, cultivators, balers, threshers, and a full-size operating saw mill powered by an 85-horsepower portable steam engine. (That's the only place we've ever seen a trailer-load of logs being hauled to a saw mill behind a Cadillac!)

With all of this, Big Edd could mount an outstanding show all by himself. But, as we found, the wideranging intellect and generous spirit of this man impell him to open his 'home' to other exhibitors, who bring in at least another three hundred engines and other machines from their homes in both Carolinas, Tennessee, Virginia, Maryland, Kentucky, Texas, Georgia and Florida.