Farm machinery event picks up steam with auction

Donning a bright yellow rain jacket, Fran Gardner was among the hundreds who braved the rain to bid on anything from saws to tractors during Thursday's auction and consignment sale at the 53rd annual Mason-Dixon Historical Society Inc. Steam and Gas Round-Up.

"I bought a hydraulic cylinder. It's just more junk I don't need," Gardner said. "For $1, it was too good to pass up."


Gardner, of Keymar, said this is the second year he has visited the auction.

"I got some good deals last year so I came back. It's a lot of fun to look at all the stuff," Gardner said.


The Steam and Gas Round-Up, often referred to as Steam Show Days, runs until Sunday at the Carroll County Farm Museum in Westminster. Since 1962, the event has featured antique farm machinery, steam and gas engines, and antique cars. The show also includes working demonstrations highlighting saw milling, shingle sawing, and branding, haling, threshing and grinding.

Robert Griesmyer, president of the Mason-Dixon Historical Society Inc., said auctioneers Nevin Tasto and Bryan Green donated their time and talents to the event Thursday.

"We run it just like any other auction. You take a number and you bid. It's mostly farm-related items, not household things. You know, guy stuff," Griesmyer said.

Griesmyer said the Round-Up helps to preserve Carroll County's agricultural heritage. He expects more than 5,000 people to visit throughout the weekend.

"It gives people an opportunity to see how things were done 100 years ago. If you've never been here you should take the time to walk around and ask people about their equipment," Griesmyer said.

Billy Duncan, 3, helped his godfather Brandon King, of Reisterstown, examine a few tractors.

"I brought some stuff like this lawn mower to sell, but I'm looking for tractors," King said. "Depending on who is here, you can find some good deals. I've already got 17 tractors. You could say I'm a collector."

Mike Wenderoth, of Westminster, said he has been visiting the Round-Up since he was a child and uses his purchases to build cars.

"I usually do pretty well here. I've bought a lot of Model A parts. I've been building cars from scratch for 15 years," Wenderoth said.

Ira Barnes, of Gamber, said he attends the auction every year.

"I bought a Gravely tractor. I'm going to use it for parts," Barnes said. "You just never know what's going to be here."

Jim Sayler, of Keysville, said attends comes because he loves auctions.


"You can really get a bargain," Sayler said. "I have a notion to buy a fan for the mules in my barn. I always buy something."

Ed Foley, of Westminster, said he was looking for something he couldn't live without.

"You never know what you're going to see here. I can usually find something for a less expensive price. It's a pretty good sale," Foley said.

David Zepp, of Westminster, paid $6 for a red Radio Flyer scooter for his young grandchild.

"It's a good deal. I come every year to support the club," Zepp said.

Griesmyer said the proceeds keep the Historical Society running.

"We welcome anyone that has an interest in the history of farming. We spend most of our time getting ready for this show," Griesmyer said.

Griesmyer said he always looks forward to seeing familiar faces at the Round-Up.

"You see people you haven't seen all year long. It's a great opportunity to renew friendships and meet new people," Griesmyer said.



Mason-Dixon Historical Society, Inc. Steam and Gas Round-Up schedule:

A flea market, hayrides and farmhouse tours will be available throughout the weekend. Breakfast is available every day from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. Lunch and dinner are available every day from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Friday, Sept. 11

10 a.m.: Opening Ceremony

6 p.m.: Tractor Parade followed by evening Tractor Games.

Saturday, Sept. 12 and Sunday, Sept. 13:

9 a.m.: Worship Service (Sunday only)

10 a.m.: Opening Ceremony

11:30 a.m.: Saw Mill and Shingle Mill Operation

Noon: Slow Tractor Race

1 p.m.: Antique Cars and Trucks Parade

1:30 p.m.: Kids Pedal Pull

2 p.m.: Threshing and Baling

4 p.m.: Steam Engines and Tractors Parade. Evening Tractor Games (Saturday only).

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