Mauri Williamson has been excited for months. The former director of Purdue Ag Alumni and of Pioneer Village at the Indiana State Fair couldn't wait to get four Huber tractors moved to the fairgrounds and into Pioneer Village. The big event happened last week.
Robert Stwalley, and his wife, Nancy, Crawfordsville, donated the tractors to Pioneer Village for display. Stwalley had collected them over several years and enjoyed them on the farm.
"They were similar to ones my dad used in threshing rings when I was a kid," he says. "I also drove on of the Huber tractors in the field when I was big enough to do field work."
Three of the four tractors were restored. As they came from the factory in Marion, Ohio, they started on gasoline and then ran on kerosene. While not running when they were picked up, Stwalley had them running at one time.
The oldest of the lot, a 1929 model, hasn't been restored. However, Tim Nannet, now director of Pioneer Village, believes it can be restored and put in working order along with the other tractors. One primary use anticipated for at least some of the tractors during the state fair this summer is to run the drive belt that powers the grain thresher during threshing demonstrations.
"We enjoyed them while we had them, but we wanted everybody to be able to learn about them and enjoy then too," Stwalley says. "This way they will be on display forever, and everybody who goes to the fair can see them."
It was hard to tell who was happier when the tractors loaded on flatbeds pulled by pickups pulled out of the driveway. Nannet and Williamson were obviously pleased. Having these tractors will greatly enhance their exhibit.
"We're happy too though," Stwalley summarized. "We're glad they're getting a good home."