The Estherville Sweet Corn Days parade 10:30 a.m. Saturday will have a little bit more of local history when an early 1900s McCormick-Deering stationary baler pulled by a 10-20 McCormick-Deering tractor makes its way down Central Avenue.
The baler, previously owned by Ted and LeRoy Schacherer, is being donated by Ted's sons Jim and Bill and LeRoy's sons Gene, Bob and Louis. Restoring the baler were Wayne Petersen, Don Valen and Don Koons, board members of the Emmet County Historical Society Museum.
While no one present at the official presentation Thursday exactly remembered the baler being used, between the Schacherers and the board members they pretty well were able to show how it worked.
Schacherers donating a stationary McCormick-Deering baler to the Emmet County Historical Society Museum were Bill, Jim, Gene, Bob and Louis. Ted Schacherer, father of Jim, Bill and Bob, and LeRoy, father to Gene and Louie, owned the baler that sat idle at LeRoy’s place a half-mile west of Wallingford for the past 40 years.
EDN photo by Michael Tidemann
And it was more complicated that you would think, requiring a crew of six to manage the belt-drive baler that used wire - yes, the baling wire people say falling-apart things are held together with - to tie each bale.
About two minutes from start to finish.
Koons remembered seeing a baler just like in at the Butterfield, Minn. threshing bee, dating back to 1922.
"I thought they said it was in the thirties when they got it," Gene recalled his father LeRoy as saying.
Valen remembers his father using one like it, which would have put it in the early 1900s.
"It makes you appreciate how hard those guy worked," said Bob.
Louis remembers two guys pitching in straw as the machine worked, and Bill remembers the dustclouds from baling red clover.
Talk ranged beyond that even, with Valen recalling how his grandfather said before all the area farms were bought up that if someone wanted to bale native prairie grass he could.
"It's a piece of history," Koons observed, adding that the baler will be pulled with a McCormick-Deering 10-20 tractor in Saturday's parade.