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In 1955, Massey President James Duncan approached Deere about merging the two companies. In some areas, such a deal made sense for Deere. Deere had been attempting to expand internationally and here was a chance to have a ready-made overseas distribution and manufacturing system. It also helped Deere in the western part of the United States, where Massey had strong dealerships and where Deere's partnership with Caterpillar was beginning to dissolve.
With the 4th of July coming soon made me think of a article I saw a while back. Written by Larry Leitzke.
Back in the twenties we had telephone and electricity, but no radio. After supper on the long winter nights, I would wait for my dad to come in from the barn. He would lie down on our leather couch and I would crawl up and sit on the edge of the couch and he would tell me stories. He always made the honest man seem like such a winner, no matter what the trial or temptation. He would say "Don't judge any man whether he be Republican, or Democrat, Jew, Catholic or Protestant, as all were Americans".
Reading the blogs that Donna wrote about all the events and shows all over the U.S.. caught my interest. My interest in all the antique equipment and the history behind it just gets my curiosity stirring. No, I do not wish I would have lived back then, but I do understand and appreciate the challenge and hard work that the farmers did each day to survive.
That brings us to today and summer threshing shows. They give all of us just a taste of what farmers had to do in the past. I say just a taste because I go to shows and walk around and watch other people crank the tractors and pitch the oat straw in the threshers.
As I write this, it's the beginning of a new year. There's been a lot going on in the antique tractor hobby. Some collectors have been dispersing their collections, while others keep adding to theirs. Just when you think you have the pricing figured out, another auction or private sale goes by and new information has to be added to what you thought you knew. Later model tractors continue to be increasingly popular and implement signs are very fast also. Lawn tractors continue to be very active as does the memorabilia side. There are many different kinds of collectors. From cast iron seats to the old steel wrenches. I couldn't name all hobby collections, but if your interested they are all fun.
Ethanol is maybe not a popular topic to talk about with other people. Everyone has there opinion, some people like it, others put up with it, and some don't like it at all. I have used it for years with no problems. I have a friend that if ethanol was the only fuel available for his antique tractor he would leave it the shed and walk.
Think about all the inventions related to farming from 100+ years ago to now. The brilliants of all those inventors were in a class of there own. Here are what I consider to be the 10 most significant agricultural inventions.
1. Cotton Gin: In 1793, Eli Whitney built a machine consisting of a row of close-set wheels with saw-like teeth around their perimeters. The wheels proturded through narrow slits between metal bars into a hopper filled with cotton bolls. As the wheels revolved, the teeth caught the cotton fibers and pulled them through the slits, which were too narrow for the seeds to pass, thus separating the two.
Whitney's cotton gin allowed 1,000 pounds of cotton to be cleaned in the time it took one man to do 5 pounds by hand.
One would have expected the first commercially successful U.S. tractor design would have been the product of a massive developement and testing program directed by a large steam engine, or gasoline stationary engine manufacturer. It was not. The first successful design came from an entirely different source . Hart and Parr, two college engineering students at the University of Wisconsin, designed and built several gasoline engines as part of their college course work. This work was expanded into designing and building a tractor (No.1) in 1901 after graduating from college. After field testing, the design was improved and tractor No.2 was built.