History was displayed at the 46th Annual Divide County Threshing Bee. Just about every make and model of Avery tractors were present at the old-fashioned threshing.
The event advertised one of the world's largest collections of Avery tractors, with more than 100 of the old steam-powered engines on display throughout the weekend. Among the antique but still functional pieces was a 1913 4-horsepower tractor owned by Mark Pedersen.
"It was a basket case," Pedersen said. "I was eight years putting it back together." The tractor was sold in new condition in Oklahoma in 1914. With its large wheels and heavy-drive train, it was built to bust prairie, however, it was unable to do so.
"By the time this engine was built, the need for it was already done," Pederson said. "The prairie was already busted out, and you don't need an engine this big to run the threshing machine."
It was used for a while as a plow and then later used to grade roads. Eventually, the boiler suffered too much wear, which is why it was dismantled. Pedersen was one of the many attendees with tractors and cars to show off.
For Andy Brunen, on the other hand, it was just another day of work. "I have a 60-acre farm and this goes on there for me every day," he said. "Old tractors like these are all I have. I do the haying and everything with it because I can do everything myself. I can fix them all myself."
He likes the event because it teaches young people about the past. "You have to have hindsight to have foresight," he stated. "It's important for people to see where we have come from."
Around 3,000 people attended the 3-day event and raised approximately $48,000 to support the preservation of local history and the Pioneer Village.
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