Sept. 26 2022 08:00 AM

Time spent at the Edgar Steam Show reminded me how much tractors and farming have changed in the past century.

The world sure has changed over the last one hundred or so years, and we can easily tell that by looking at the progression that has occurred in agriculture. It is especially easy to see these changes when observing agricultural technology. Today we have every model and size of tractor imaginable to plant, harvest, move equipment, bring feed to animals, and more. Some are even driving all on their own!

If you are looking to get back to the roots of how things used to be, I highly suggest looking for a tractor show in your area. If you find yourself in north central Wisconsin in late August, the Edgar Steam Show in Edgar, Wis., might be just the place for you.
This was my third time attending the show, which lasts a full weekend. Each year the show features a certain type of tractor, and this year the spotlight shined on Massey Ferguson. Even though I don’t have a Massey to flaunt, it was still such a fun time to see these featured tractors and everything else the show had to offer. There is nearly every kind and model of tractor there you can imagine, with an emphasis on old age. My 1940 Farmall B made the trip to the show once again, and if you would like to read more about the unique story of this tractor, take a look at my blog titled, “Family history on wheels.”

A crowd favorite at this show, however, tends to be the steam engines. These massive machines truly bring the history of agriculture and the beginning of industrious change to life. Several steam tractors are utilized in demonstrations at the show, including at my favorite station, the sawmill. Other attractions include the flea market with dozens of vendors, nightly polka music and dancing, equipment demonstrations, and great food.

I didn’t used to be a tractor show fan, as I have always been busy spending my time with cows. But now that I have my trusty restored tractor at my side, I completely understand the appeal and fun of getting back to your roots. I hope to see you at next year’s show!

Mikayla Peper

Mikayla grew up near Osceola, Wis. She discovered her passion for the dairy industry while working on her neighbors’ Holstein dairy farm. That spurred her involvement in 4-H and FFA, and following graduation from Osceola High School, she headed to the University of Minnesota to pursue a degree in agricultural communication and marketing. During the school year, she worked as a website designer for the University of Minnesota department of animal science, and last summer, she was a farmer relations intern for Midwest Dairy. Peper is serving as the 2022 Hoard’s Dairyman editorial intern.