A Grandfather Who Knew Gears
I don’t remember my mother’s father. He died before I was old enough to form any memories of him, so everything I know about him comes from other people. Most of the stories involve machines of some sort. The way I understand it, he was a man who could pull anything with gears apart, and put it back together better than it was. Sometimes he just took a pile of gears and made it into something they had never even thought of being. Unfortunately, he didn’t always know what he had made, either. If he had, his descendants would be millionaires today!
One of the big farm machine companies heard about his self-propelled wheat swather, and came for a closer look. What they saw made them hold out a contract that promised a salary he couldn’t turn down. The only problem was, he had no idea how to make a “pattern” for his invention, so the company could clone it. They had to hire his son, too. My uncle drew the pictures the engineers needed, and the rest is history. Farmers never had a clue which man to thank for the machine that took wheat harvesting to a whole new level.
Because by then, grandpa had moved on, to another pile of gears and another invention.
This Farm Girl Loves Stories About Grandpas and Gears
While trying to see if my grandfather’s name was ever mentioned in the same paragraph as self-propel swathers, I “wiki-d” their history. (That doesn’t sound as good as “googled.”) I found the ritchiewiki site. Who knew. Ritchie Bros is a huge auction company, and they have their own wiki site about machinery! I also found a paper on CCIL, a Canadian company I remember from way back.
(Does anyone looking for a Father’s Day card even want to read this?)
So, I never found my grandpa’s name. But you can read here about the company that hired him and used his knowledge of gears (among other things) to make a super useful farm machine.