Travel back in time at the Yesteryear Farm Show
Yesteryear Farm Show
It’s almost time again for the Yesteryear Farm Show in Longmont, Colo. The Yesteryear crew organizes and conducts an annual three-day event featuring antique tractors, farm machinery, cars, trucks and so much more. The show is located at the Dougherty Museum approximately one mile south of Longmont on U.S. Highway. 287. Many of The Fence Post readers are familiar with our show and have attended our event in the past, but for those who are not aware of us, this article will tell you what we are all about.
First, let me tell you that this year’s show will be special, as it is the 75th anniversary of the Gibson Tractor company (actually known as the Gibson Manufacturing Company). Gibsons were made in Longmont, and in Seattle, Wash., as well. We will host a “Gibson Fest” in recognition of this anniversary. Gibson tractors and equipment have become very popular among collectors over the years, and we anticipate having Gibson collectors and their collections from many states and Canada in attendance. The Gibson company made not only tractors, but other items such as fork lifts, tugs, cranes, and so forth. These items were essentially prototypes and were produced with industrial or military usage in mind, but there is no indication they were successful as few examples remain.
Gibson items are certainly not the only brand of machines that will be present at our show. There will be many other brand names in attendance — Case, John Deere, Farmall, …, you name it! Thirty-six years ago, the Yesteryear Show began as a small display of antique farm equipment (approximately eight tractors, a plow or two, and a few miscellaneous other items), at the Boulder County Fair in Longmont. People seemed to enjoy seeing these old items, and it was decided to “do it again next year.” In a few short years the show grew and became a very popular event, and in addition to displaying antique equipment, the crew began putting on demonstrations of grain threshing, baling of straw, and so forth. Other exhibitors displaying their “toys” at our show also began demonstrating their collected items and showing how they worked. This interaction between the exhibitors and the public is a large reason for our popularity — not only do folks get to see the equipment, but they get to see it work. They can talk to and ask questions of the owners, and feel like part of the show.
The show continued to grow, and in 2007, the show had outgrown the space available to us at the Boulder County Fair, and we moved to the Dougherty Museum property. This has been a win-win situation for both the Yesteryear Farm Show and the Dougherty Museum. The museum contains items of a similar nature, so the two entities complement one another very well. While you visit, make sure to spend some time in the Dougherty Museum. It is well worth your time, and the price of admission is very reasonable — kids under the age of 6 are admitted free, ages 6 through 12 cost $3, and adults are charged $7. The museum will be open during the hours of 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. each day of the show. The museum has a wonderful display of not only farm machinery and antique automobiles, but many other items as well.
The Yesteryear Farm Show typically has between 250 and 300 antique tractors as well as many other farm-related antique implements. There are also a large number of “stationary” engines. These engines, although called stationary engines, are actually gasoline engines ranging in size from one horsepower to 20 or more horsepower that are moveable from one job to another on the farm. You could set up your engine to run a corn sheller, for example, then move it to another location to provide power for a different task. They were in use for many years prior to electrical power being readily available, at which time they became “dinosaurs,” so to speak. Today, they are extremely popular with collectors. There were many manufacturers and many different types, and all of them are popular and fun to see in action. You will see a wide variety at our show. There are many other things to see, too, at the Yesteryear Farm Show. In addition to antique tractors, we typically have at least one steam traction engine — some call them “steam tractors,” a predecessor to kerosene or gasoline powered tractors. We always use a “steamer” for power during the grain threshing demonstration. Many non-farm related items can be seen as well. We have collectors that bring such items as antique camping equipment — campers, camp stoves and lanterns, vintage canvas tents, and so forth. For several years we have had on display a treadle-powered sewing machine, and a treadle-powered lathe whose owners demonstrates their use. There are blacksmithing exhibits and demonstrations, collections of old tools and gadgets of all sorts, antique cars and trucks, antique military equipment, demonstrations of spinning and weaving provided by the Handweaver’s Guild of Boulder, a sheepherder’s hut, a covered wagon, and so on. We never know who or what will show up.
What will it cost you for three days of nostalgic viewing and enjoyment? That will be your decision. There is no admission charge and no parking fee. We have a donation jar at the entrance. If you want to contribute to our show, we’ll be grateful — and thank you for doing so.
The Yesteryear Farm Show is organized and conducted by a group of unpaid volunteer members who are also exhibitors at the show. In addition, we have many exhibitors who are not members, but still take an active part in the show, and we encourage participation of all persons who collect antiques — farm related or not. So don’t hesitate to load up and bring your collection of this, that, or the other and join in the fun.
The Yesteryear Farm Show is a fun, non-competitive, visitor friendly show. We welcome all visitors, and we do our best to make sure you enjoy your visit. Come see our show. We can just about guarantee you’ll enjoy yourself, and unless you’re an “old-timer” raised on a farm, you’ll see equipment you probably haven’t seen before.
Primitive camping is provided for exhibitors.
Food and soft drinks are available. No alcoholic beverages allowed.
Overnight security is provided for exhibit protection. Coverage begins Tuesday evening August 24 continuing through Sunday evening August 29.
A benefit auction in support of the show will be conducted Sat. Aug 28 at 4 p.m. A featured item at this year’s auction is a very nicely restored 1937 Allis-Chalmers tractor. Exhibitors and visitors, too, may bid on all items.
For a complete schedule of events and more information about the show, see our Facebook page, Yesteryear Farm Show, or, contact Bob McCarty at (303) 330-3692, Harvey Nelson at (303) 776-5171 or Dave Brown at (303) 776-9859.
Even though COVID 19 virus concerns are waning (at the time this article was written), we request common sense be used with respect to the protection of yourself and others. Masks are optional, but please stay safe and be mindful of those around you.
Friday Aug. 27 through Sunday Aug. 29, 2021
Hours: Friday and Saturday 8 a.m.-8 p.m. and Sunday 8 a.m.-3 p.m.
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