Early Day Gas Engine & Tractor Association, Inc.

By Staff

Jack Versteeg, 3510 Brooklake Rd. NE, Brooks, OR 97303

In the beginning we mentioned the fellowship in the EDGE&TA.
In 1978 a member of Branch 20 from the state of Washington was
attending the national meeting at Fort Scott, KS. As his
transportation was a pickup and a camper, he had been making
purchases all along the way and at Fort Scott he purchased a
complete front axle assembly for a Samson tractor, only to realize
that he had two Engines, a windmill and lots of parts in the
camper. After much discussion, another person offered to haul the
axle as far as Kansas City. Another member picked it up and
delivered it to Mt. Pleasant, IA-from there it went to Des Moines.
That winter, it was delivered to the Branch 20 member’s house.
All along the way, there were no freight charges. Somewhere down
the line, we are sure that this favor has been returned
twofold.

The national meeting is held once a year. The time and place are
determined by the branch that is host. This rotates from branch to
branch, by the numbers. When a branch’s turn comes up, they
have the option of hosting or not hosting the meeting. This is
strictly voluntary.

The national meeting for 1990 will be hosted by Branch 10, and
held at Oak Creek, WI. This will be a good show as the J. I. Case
Heritage Foundation is also having a big doings there at the same
time. The 1989 national was hosted by Branch 9 at Pottsville, OR.
This is a small community just north of Grants Pass and is named
after State Senator Deb Potts.

It is interesting to note that by rotating the national meeting
from branch to branch, it occurs in a different area of the country
each year. In doing this, the exhibitors seem to put on an extra
effort and display some unique and very rare equipment. A lot of
this iron would not normally be seen otherwise.

There are branches in many states with varying sizes of
membership, from 20 to over 700. Branches are located in AR, KS,
MO, MI, IN, WI, IA, MN, WA, ID, CA, MT, NM and OR.

There are about 4000 national members and membership is not
restricted to men. The gals and kids are heartily welcome. Most
branches have a get together or gas-up about every six weeks. They
have a short business meeting, accompanied by a pot luck dinner or
baked bean feed. The gatherings are usually held at different
members’ places, fair or show grounds.

This type of activity helps promote the friendship and
fellowship that most branches enjoy. It also stimulates interest
from nonmembers who are curious about our hobby.

Many branches have newsletters and they are exchanged among
branches. This exchange of information gets the news out to a large
portion of the country. The names of some of these newsletters are
quite interesting, such as: The Backfire, Chugger, Ignitor,
Flywheeler, Cast Iron News.

The Early Day Gas Engine & Tractor Association Inc. has been
in business for over 30 years and to the best of our knowledge
there never has been a serious accident at a show or gas-up where a
member has been exhibiting. Our record of good safety has been
accomplished by everyone being very conscious, watching out for
anyone or anything that might become a problem.

More on this subject in our next column!

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