| May/June 1972

1 HP Chore Boy

Courtesy of Joe Fahnestock, Union City, Indiana 47390.

Joe Fahnestock

Dayton Daily News & Radio's 'Joe's Journal'

It was early spring, not even the dandelions had popped up through the cool, moist ground as we drove up the long lane, past the two lovely white houses cozily situated at the far end. The sprawling fields bore evidence of winter plowing here and there, but planting was still a few weeks away.

In one field there would be strawberries, in another tomatoes, yet another, watermelons, cantaloupes and Hallowe'en pumpkins growing between rows of Silver Chief sweet corn. The only visible crop above the ground were the eighty-some apple trees, planted years ago--and these hadn't even begun to bud. It was a cool, overcast day-- the lull between the end of winter and the spring planting which soon would be coming up--a mighty fine time to finish painting a couple of prize gas engines for the mid west gas round-ups this summer.

'What a beautiful engine,' I said, spotting the big 1894 Springfield, occupying the center of the workshop floor where John Stoltz and his father, Earl, had just finished some touching-up.

'Bet you can't guess the horsepower of that engine,' said John, figuring that the size and weight, as well as the 30-inch diameter fly-wheels would cause me to miscalculate--which they did.

'Let's see--it looks like it might be a six-horse engine,' I replied. 'How much is it?'