When David and Gus visited Mr. Hemmett they had an unexpected find. Not only was there the small tip-cart but other full sized farm wagons. The first that David looked at was a double shafted Lincolnshire wagon designed for the flat lands of that county and too big and heavy for his Suffolk mare of 16.2 hands. But tucked at the back under a tarpaulin was the ideal vehicle – a Norfolk wagon that could take either a single or double shaft and was suitable for the smaller draught horse.
On Saturday, March 30, 2013 in Orange, Virginia, members of the Virginia Draft Horse and Mule Association (VDHMA), Old Dominion Draft Horse and Mule Association and Virginia Percheron Association trailered in to support Bob Brennan’s annual Farm Day. Other teamsters traveled from various parts of Virginia as well as North Carolina, West Virginia, Massachusetts and New York to demonstrate their skills in tilling a large field supplied by one of Bob’s neighbors for this public event.
The Anatomy of a Buggy • Auto Seat Buggy • Auto Seat Cutunder Buggy • Twin Reach Auto Seat Buggy • Concord Auto Seat Buggy • Light Concord Buggy • Auto Seat Cutunder Surrey • Auto Seat Surrey • Side Spring Surrey • Driving Wagon • Cutunder Driving Wagon • Concord Driving Wagon • Road Wagon • Half Platform Spring Wagon • Four-Spring Mountain Wagon • Three-Seated Spring Wagon • Spring Wagon • Skeleton Wagon, Shuler Springs • Long Body Road Wagon • Cutunder Delivery Wagon • Heavy Oil Wagon • Village Wagon • Runabout Slat Wagon • Heavy Oil Wagon • Farm Wagon
Chuckwagons have become quite rare, although they can occasionally be found on large ranches, but most often in a parade or museum, such as the one owned by Vern Krinke of Auburn, Washington. Krinke, a ruggedly handsome man in his 70s, is a chuckwagon cook of extraordinary talent who prepares sumptuous dinners from his 80-130 year old Studebaker chuckwagon that he restored after finding it in a junk pile on a ranch southeast of Saratoga, Wyoming.
While the low down delivery wagon is an improvement, the objectionable features are increased. But with all those objections the low down wagons increase every year. Their convenience outweighs all other objections. They are handy for country delivery and are fitted up inside to suit either grocers, bakers, butchers or milk delivery, or a combination of the four.
Forgive me for what will be a rather rambling and maybe melancholy submission. Maybe I am actually writing this for me. You decide. Life is not always success and joy. It is tempered with tough times. So, when Shannon asked me if I had anything to contribute to this upcoming issue, I had to think through what would benefit us as readers. Sometimes sharing our weak moments, our vulnerabilities, our failures and experience strengthen others. That is really what I want to do, strengthen.
The presence of springs on a horse-drawn carriage seems to be of little importance when judged by purely essential criteria. They are not needed to start or stop the vehicle. The horse provides motive power and brakes will stop the carriage when necessary. A carriage without springs could still function, as springs do not serve any absolutely necessary task. They do not light the way at night like lanterns do, or keep occupants dry in a rainstorm like a top. But riding in a carriage minus springs would be most uncomfortable, especially over cobblestone streets or on a country lane, or on a long journey.
“I found the undercarriage from a hearse in Brookings, SD. The spindles still had the factory name stamped on them, so it wasn’t used very much. But the wood was all rotten so that all had to be replaced. Loren and I worked together on it over about a year and a half. I did the undercarriage and he did the body. It’s all made out of solid walnut that we cut in the area and planed.”
The Marsden Hayrack was likely built in the early 20th century and was used in various forms until the mid-60’s. Sometimes called a “basket rack,” it wasn’t glamorous, so few pictures exist. One from 1953 shows it in the farm yard and it still had its original wood wheels and running gear. By the 1990’s little remained. I was able to bring to my shop the front axle, hounds, sand beam, tongue and one wheel. Fortunately, I was able to get all 4 sets of skeins and boxings for the wheels.
The information in this article may appear so specific that it escapes application for most folk, but we have discovered that this sort of detail can work to spur the ingenious farmer and shade tree mechanics towards far flung remedies to seemingly unrelated applications. In this case the material is very specific to the challenge of attaching an offset wagon to the back of a pto or ground drive corn binder so that the harvested crop may be gathered in the same field pass. The geometrical solutions to the offset draft are amazing. Where else would one find such information but in your Small Farmer’s Journal?
These images came as patent documents in a group of other wagon related inventions from the 19th century. They were sent to us by Journal reader and friend Gail C. Millard. We give hearty thanks. LRM
No sooner had we arrived in Great Falls, and Nick put forth a wonderful idea – Grant-Kohrs needs a horse drawn dump wagon. Betty knows where a couple of them are, and we could restore one for the Ranch’s use. Grant-Kohrs will pay for any materials needed and we would donate the labor. Nick had brought his flatbed trailer and we could leave in the morning for Brady, MT, to meet Harvey & Marcia Hollandsworth. Out across the wheat lands of Montana we did go. Betty and Marcia had worked together for years with the 4-H clubs and Harvey, like Nick and me, is short on only one thing – TIME! We are never bored and we have way too many projects to complete in a normal lifetime. A good condition to have! One of the wagons was made by the Russell Co. and the other was made by the Western Wheeled Scraper Works located in Aurora, IL.
There exists a need in every part of the country where there is passenger transportation by rail or water a necessity for a vehicle for the comfortable conveyance of travelers, transient or commuters, of sufficient size to accommodate four grown persons at least, in addition to the riders on the driver’s seat. The large wagonettes serve the purpose fairly well, but all excepting those who occupy the driver’s seat must sit on seats that parallel the length of the body. To many this is decidedly objectionable from the standpoint of comfort, as well as from the restriction of vision to passing objects instead of the much longer view that is obtained by facing the direction in which the vehicle is moving, or by the continued view when looking rearward.
The first step was to decide on an appropriate chassis, or “running gear.” Eventually I chose to go with the real deal, a wooden-wheeled gear with leaf springs rather than pneumatic tires. Wooden wheels last forever with care and are functional and look the part. I bought an antique delivery wagon that had been left outdoors as an ornament. I was able to reuse some of the wheels and wooden parts of the running gear.
When horses were the main source of power on every farm, in the British Isles it was the tip-cart, rather than the wagon which was the most common vehicle, and for anyone farming with horses, it is still an extremely useful and versatile piece of equipment. The farm cart was used all over the country, indeed in some places wagons were scarcely used at all, and many small farms in other areas only used carts.
This numbered, all original U.S. Army Escort Wagon is in exceptional condition, formerly displayed at the Lewis Army Museum on Joint Base Lewis-McChord. Note the sarven hubs and the California style box. The lower front box was suitable for carrying cannon balls. The Army wagon, also referred to as an Escort wagon, was traditionally pulled by 4-6 mules and was capable of carrying 3000 pounds. At the height of its utility during the Spanish-American War, the Army-Escort Wagon transported military troops, rations and gear. Parade and museum worthy.