Archived Past Pages:2014 pages
DECEMBER 7, 2014We were privileged this week to receive the following glimpse into the past life of one of our Founding Members, George Valentine. The author of the letter speaks for himself, and has the documentation to go with it. We are very grateful that he thought of us as he looked back at a memorable day in his life. Mr. Holton writes:
A BIT OF LOCAL HISTORY
BY MILLARD HOLTON
During my 3-year restoration project of a 1952 John Deere, Model MT, I discovered some interesting details referencing the history of this antique tractor. You see, I had the experience of purchasing this tractor, brand new, on January 5, 1952 when I was 15 years old; over 63 years ago. This tractor was obtained from a former John Deere dealership located in Brant, Michigan called Brant Hardware and Implement Company.
This purchase was a "Significant Emotional Event" for a teenager and many of the memories of this event are still solidly imprinted in my mind! I had recently located the original receipt for this above transaction that my mother had tucked away in a family album, among other historical pictures and documents. This receipt was written on just a half sheet of white paper and listed the machinery delivered, the amounts of cash received and the date of January 5, 1952. This receipt was hand written by the dealership employee that delivered the tractor while he sat around our kitchen table, along with my father, Delbert, my mother Nellie, and myself. This employee was none other than George Valentine who is listed in every show program issued by the Mid-Michigan Old Gas Tractor Association as one of the original founders of the Club. One thing that always stuck in my mind over the past 63 years was the name of George Valentine and I still have a vision of the four of us sitting around the kitchen table counting out the stacks of money totaling $1,600.00 for the MT, complete with plow and cultivator. I had never seen that much cash at any one time!
After being stored in the corner of my Pole barn for over 35 years I began restoring the MT in the spring of 2012 and after a complete disassembly and re-build, I drove the tractor across the Mackinaw Bridge on September 5, 2014. The tractor never looked this good when it was new and God willing I hope to exhibit the MT at the 2015 Oakley Show during next August! The money was earned from many hours of tractor field work for my older brothers and a pet lamb or pig that I raised and sold!
(click individual photos to enlarge)
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