Every year, on a Saturday in June, Bill Hedrick, his son Jason and Jason’s family invite neighbors to stop by and see their collection of antique tractors. In fact, the Hedricks, Battleground, Ind., fill the barn lot with their 84 tractors. They invite neighbors to bring their own antique tractors to be part of the display, too.
This year, counting the 84 tractors owned by the Hedrick family, roughly 120 tractors, plus a couple dozen hit-and-miss engines, were on display for anybody who wanted to see them. And anyone who wanted to drive a tractor could be part of the mile-long parade up and down the road in the afternoon.
“It’s quite the event,” says Pete Illingworth, a neighbor who attends every year. He also enjoys the pitch-in dinner and chance to talk to other neighbors and friends while taking in the scenery — a very unique collection of tractors.
Where do the Hedricks keep their tractors the rest of the year? “They’re stored away in their barns,” Illingworth says. “They tell me there is a specific way each tractor has to go into the barn to make enough room for everything to fit.”
Hedrick, a retired mechanic, says he started picking up tractors when neighbors retired nearly 50 years ago. Most, but not all, of the tractors in his collection are restored. A few are miniature, custom, one-of-a-kind models.
Is Hedrick done adding to the collection? Probably not. In fact, he says he already has his eyes on No. 85.
What he really appreciates, he notes, is when neighbors come to their gathering each year to spend time with them.
It’s an annual event the community looks forward to, Illingworth says.
Check out the 10 Hedrick tractors selected for this slideshow. Narrowing it down to 10 was difficult. Look for more to appear in the future.