Big enough

Published 8:52 am Wednesday, August 19, 2009

In 1910 his grandfather walked behind a long-eared creature called a mule pulling a five shank cultivator. That mule was a right good pulling machine.

In 1915 that same man hitched two mules together and pulled a double plow. He was really doing something now.

In 1932 he went in with a farmer friend and bought a brand new steel-wheeled gas-powered Fordson tractor. It ran his thrasher and didn’t need feeding every morning.

By 1936, he traded two mules for a Farmall Tricycle. That baby had a disc and cultivator that could be pulled right behind it.

1938 saw him purchase an Allis Chalmer WC with real rubber tires. It had a trailing plow with two 14-inch bottoms and a pull rope to trip it at the end. He could even pull a disc that was a full seven feet across. Goodness gracious, he didn’t see any way tractors could get much bigger or better.

In the early 1940s the war came and everything stayed the same.

Up the lane to the farm in 1948 rolled a Ford Ferguson with this thing on the back called a three point hitch and (can you believe it?) most all implements could be hooked to one tractor. Unbelievable. That tractor had 20 horsepower.

By 1950 his father had bought a Ford 8N. Surely the most luxurious tractor that had ever been built.

1958 saw the purchase of a Dexter three cylinder. This thing was something called a diesel. It had no spark plugs and could pull like a whole team of mules!

In 1966 his father bought this huge machine called a Ferguson 165. It had 52 horsepower and his father wondered why a man would ever need any more horsepower.

1968 saw a Ford “Select-o-speed” that was 55 horsepower.

In 1976 this huge marriage of metal and rubber rolled onto the farm called a Ford 8600. It had three steps up to get to the seat and once there a man was almost 10-feet tall! Surely any farm implement on any farm could be pulled by this thing. 110 horsepower! This had to be the biggest tractor anyone would ever need.

In 1981 they bought a TW-20 with 120 horsepower. It had a glass enclosed structure around the seat called a cab. And it had an air conditioner! Goodness gracious, this had to be it.

1995 saw the purchase of a Ford 8730. 160 raging horsepower. It should be enough power for the next 20 years.

2006 the son bought a 215 horsepower Ford 8970 four wheel drive that about takes an elevator to get in. This is definitely it. I promise. I’m sure I’ll never need anything bigger.