| January/February 1973

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

You can't argue with this fellow-he's too good natured. And he's probably liable to smile at you with a warm, ear-to-ear grin that'll disarm you anyway so that you forget what it was you were arguing about. Then you wind up agreeing with him, especially if it's about Rumely Oil-Pulls because you've found out he knows more about them than you do. (Unless you're Ralph Horstman who made his climb the steepest hill at Wauseon.)

Wherever there's an old-time tractor meet in the Buckeye-Hoosierland area, you'll see him--somewhere over by the Rumelys, looking over the oiler, or listening to the stack music while tinkering with mixture of oil and water till she barks just right. Whether it's at his home-plate show of Rushville, Ind., where he takes his fleet of four Oil-Pulls, or later at Georgetown, Ohio, the Miami Valley Threshers at London, or Tri-State at Portland--he can be both seen and heard lining someone's big Rumely up to the fan belt to stir up the afternoon breezes with a little demonstration of Oil-Pull horsepower.

The first time I ever met Jack Maple he was carrying a bundle of Rumely Oil-Pull decals under his arm, striding among the line-up of old tractors with his wife, Hazel, on the National Threshers grounds at Wauseon, Ohio, several years ago. The friendly smile, the weather-worn face, the dark brown eyes underneath that broad-brimmed straw hat reminded me of the proverbial farm boy who had grown up, still loving the things he had aspired to in his youth.

Ambling up to an old Rumely nearby, he spread out one of his decals to show the improvement it made on the original antique product. And it did, adding a couple hundred dollars to the appearance.

From then on, wherever I'd attend a steam engine--gas tractor reunion, there would be Jack and Hazel Maple some-where in the crowd, milling about the internal-combustion segment. For they are of the friendly kind of elbow-rubbing farm folk who like to congregate around the engines, talking engines, working on engines and/or running engines whenever the occasion demands. And, for all the many other little chores a man can't do, like peeling apple schnitz at Tri-State for apple butter, helping with the Sunday morning Bible classes at the Darke County Threshers, or the thousand-and-one odd chores at their Rushville, Ind., reunion, Hazel Maple, leaving Jack with his Rumely, always rushes to fill in.


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