Filed under: Farm, Minnesota, tillage | Tags: antique, farm, Minnesota, old iron, old tractors, plow, plowing, tillage, tractor, tractors
Jane asked, “They look great, don’t they? And for crying out loud, tell us non-farmers why aren’t they used anymore.” My answer:
Not only have tractors gotten better, but the implements they pull have gotten better.
When the pioneers came to the plains they brought the plow and used it to turn over the sod so that they could plant food crops that people could eat. But the soil of the plains could not take being without plant cover and much soil washed or blew away,think dust bowl. Although some farmers still plow, they are becoming fewer as we learn ways to keep the plant material from previous crops in place and still plant a crop. Modern chemicals, many of them nature based, keep the weeds at bay while allowing a new crop to grow and help keep the soil in place.
Today, because of the better jobs in the city, there are fewer farmers left to till the soil, and we must farm ever increasing acres as more and more rural young people move to city jobs. The tiny tractors of the past cannot hope to keep up with the acres we must cover to feed the world. We still love to see them in operation, but they are tools of the past as much as the abacus and the slide-rule.
Filed under: Farm, history, Minnesota, tillage | Tags: farm, Minnesota, old iron, old tractors, plow, plowing, tillage, tractor, tractors
Labor day afternoon, 2011, old iron enthusiasts gathered near Delft, Minnesota to show off what their old iron could do. At one time there were 26 tractors totaling 67 bottoms, plowing the wheat field near U.S. Highway 71.
There were tractors of many brands turning over the earth in the wonderful late summer weather.
Trucks, trailers, cars and people were everywhere. It looked like a farm sale was on. Traffic on the highway slowed for folks to see the old iron at work.
My dad hooked the old Cockshutt onto an old 3 bottom to try it out.
There were two tractors on steel wheels plowing.
The biggest tractor there was a 3020 Deere.
Most of the tractors had been rebuilt and painted, but a few were unrestored.
When you lined them all up nose to tail the line was over a quarter of a mile long. They would plow a swath almost 90 feet wide when they all made a pass.
It was a fun day to talk old iron and remember why we don’t plow with these old tractors anymore.
Here’s a few more pictures of the day.
Old iron, gotta love it!