Everybody ought to get a look at friendly John O’Connell, because a couple of very interesting old photographs he sent us appear on page 25. The 2520 Diesel Hi-Crop was acquired in March 2001, when John wisely took his Minnesota family to rare tractor country in Florida on vacation. They laid on the beach while he went “Deere” hunting. He heard of some tractors for sale, so he drove to the Big Cypress Seminole Indian Reservation at the northern edge of the Everglades. There he met Jake Osceola, Project Director at Seminole Farms. There were 17 Hi-Crops, which were to be sold “all for one money.” John went to see a man he knew who was County Commissioner and knew the Chief of the tribe. When John went back to see Chief David Cypress, they talked for awhile. Chief Cypress then said, “Commissioner Floyd Crews said you are okay.” The Chief then told Jake Osceola to sell John just the one tractor he wanted. To the left is a splendid 2010 Hi-Crop (gas) belonging to Bill Miller of Carlinville, Illinois.


Another of Bill Miller’s exhibits was this crowd-pleasing 1988 900HC, one of seven that were modified specifically for ginseng production in Marathon County, Wisconsin. Bill has a complaint about the hood, as the seam runs right through the “D” in Deere and does not line up perfectly on the right-hand side. That’s the only flaw we could find, and it’s a factory issue (kind of like the waves on twocylinder “30” Series hoods), so he couldn’t talk us out of a Superior Restoration Award. Note that this unit is an ‘88, which is only 25 years old. Sometimes we break our own rules.

Larry Hynek and his wife, Kerry, of Morse Bluff, Nebraska, displayed their possibly one-of-a-kind 1971 industrial yellow Row- Crop 2520 Diesel with Power Shift. It was originally ordered by the Department of Corrections, State of Minnesota, and was placed in service at the Stillwater Prison until being sold in July 2010.

From the floor up. Lee Sackett and his crew (Lee J. Sackett, Inc.) have been entertaining and educating Expo attendees for several years, each time assembling a pre-restored (at his shop in Minnesota) vintage John Deere Tractor in about two days. This year it was a 1949 Model “B”. Assembly operations are digitally recorded in timelapse mode, and continually projected on a screen in their work area, so onlookers can arrive at any time and catch up on what has already been accomplished. This was the first year that Sackett has attempted a “styled” tractor.


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