R.R. 6, Box 167, Frankfort, Indiana 46041
Among the most interesting stories I read in Gas Engine Magazine
are the ones about old antique tractors, engines, or other things
handed down from the original owner to the present owner. The next
interesting are the stories about second owner things. My story is
about one of the latter.
The rarest generally thought of John Deere Model B is the four
speed, styled variety built in 1939 and 1940. There were 36,000 of
them numbered 60,000 to 95,999, with the break being at number
81,599 for the last 1939 year model.
My number 75797 was built on April 25, 1939, and was shipped to
the Norman J. Pusey agency at Avondale, Pennsylvania. A Mr.
Buckalew of New London, Pennsylvania bought it along with a used
two row cultivator Model ABG-200 on March 11, 1940 for $806.00.
Somewhere along the way Mr. Buckalew died, and his widow moved
to a farm a mile north of Lincoln University, about a ten-mile
About April, 1948, Charlie, the hired man was plowing, and
rolled the Model B down a 15 foot road bank. I saw it go down, and
ran down to see if Charlie was O.K. There sat Charlie in the road
beside the overturned tractor. I ran back, got my tractor and
several log chains and went back to help Charlie set his tractor
up. We had to drag the front end around as the bottom was towards
the bank. Charlie put the brakes on. We hooked the chains onto the
top part of the top wheel, and I pulled it upright. There was no
damage to the tractor except a small dent in the top of the grille
on one side. Charlie started up the tractor and went back to
About 1960 to 1962 Mrs. Helen Buckalew sold this Model B and the
cultivator to me for $50.00. I put better used tires on the tractor
and used it.
A couple years later I broke one rear wheel in a logging
accident. I could not locate a replacement wheel, so I put a pair
of cast 38′ wheels on it from a scrapped 1941 Model B tractor.
The proper wheels for this tractor are 36′ flat spoke wheels,
which I would apply if I ever located a pair within driving
distance, and not in the winter time.
Also somewhere along the way I bought a used power lift for
$25.00 and put it on. Aside from that, the tractor is all
I painted it in 1972 and applied a set of John Deere decals.
This tractor has never sat in a barn or a field idle. The longest
time it was idle was the ten and half months it sat from being
built until it was sold, new.
I take this tractor to the local show here at Frankfort each