Thursday, November 05, 2009

Grandpa’s (Most) Original Tractor

The first photograph is of a tractor owned by my maternal grandfather, Walter James Rosselot. Dating to about 1940, it may have been his first one, but it was definitely the first he ever constructed himself. It was built with the frame of a 1923 Dodge, with a 1916 motor of the same make. The gas tank is from a Model T Ford, vintage unknown. The rear wheels were made from scratch, while the brake drum at the center of the wheel is from an old truck of unknown origin. It was used for seven years to plow corn, using a 1936 Oliver plow.

The second photograph dates from 1965, of an unidentified man pulling a land leveling device, invented by Grandpa earlier in the decade, and for which he earned a US Patent. After briefly manufacturing the first units out of his garage (which was essentially a home-built tool and die factory), he eventually sold the patent to a company in (as I recall) Indiana.

At the time he left the farm with Grandma to live in the city with my aunt, he had a patent pending on a can crushing machine.

(Images courtesy of the Rosselot Family Archives. Used with permission.)

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