Windmills and Farm Equipment
The museum has many restored windmills scattered through out the museum grounds and the adjacent Railroad Park. In addition, we have a large variety of farm equipment and implements lined up between the Exhibit Building and the Railroad depot. Do you see anything that looks familiar? Some equipment and implements have changed little over the years, while others have evolved leaps and bounds.
Windmills - The windmills were placed in Railroad Park beginning in 1996. For four years in a row, a Windmill Day was held to place them with the assistance of volunteers from the community. In 2018, the last of the windmills was installed. Among the restored windmills are windmills by David Bradley, CurrieDempster, Eclipse, Aermotor, Elgin, and Fairbury.
Horse Drawn Implements - In the era before steam and diesel power, horse, oxen, and man himself provided power to farm equipment. Much of the equipment from those days was created on the farm or by the local blacksmith. Frequently materials on hand were repurposed.
Along the fence in front of the railroad depot can be found examples of these kinds of farm equipment. Can you find the oil barrel that was repurposed into a grasshopper bait spreader?
Fences - In 2011, the Smithsonian Institute had a travelling exhibit called "Between Fences". The exhibit took a look at the history of fences as well as the role fences have played in communities across America. Our museum was honored to host it in the Exhibit Building. The local FFA organization contributed to the local exhibit by building different kinds of fences found on farms and ranches. Included are board fences, wire fences, picket fences, and even hog fencing.
Antique Farm Equipment Road - Horse drawn, steam driven and fuel driven farm equipment line the road between the Exhibit Building and the Railroad Depot. The equipment nearest the exhibit building is numbered from west to east and a self-guided tour brochure is available at each end of the display.
On display are such items as 2 well drilling rigs, a Peacock wheat drill, a Gleaner Baldwin combine, hake rakes, Gravelly mowers, a potato planter, John Deere and McCormick Deering tractors, plows and culitvators. Some equipment was manufactured, but others were cobbled together from pieces of other equipment or materials on hand. This was especially true during the Depression and the war years.