Just being around certain things will trigger strong memories. I know that’s how it is with farm kids and tractors. Boys or girls remember the first tractor they drove.
The Midwest Old Thresher’s Reunion gave both my husband and me plenty of opportunities to remember our first tractor experiences. My ‘first’ was a Farmall H. I got to drive it for the hay wagon while my dad stacked bales. My fervent prayer was that I wouldn’t ‘kill it’ when I let out the clutch.
My husband’s ‘first’ was a John Deere 730. He remembers it was his first time working the clutch – much easier than the Farmall clutch, I understand. He also has fond memories for the Deere 430 he had on his acreage. Wishes he still had it.
Whenever I talk with groups about my memoir of growing up on the farm, and ask if people remember the first tractor they drove, smiles break out, heads nod, and stories start flying.
Each day of the Reunion, they hold a parade of power. People drive horses, traction steam engines, and gas-powered tractors past the grandstand. I was tickled to see kids driving tractors, with their dads standing right behind them. I just know those kids are going to remember their first tractor.