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If you plan it, they will come

By Staff | May 4, 2018

Moline implements are on display at the Loren and Ruth Book farm. Loren Book has been collecting Moline equipment since 1985.



NEVADA-Loren Book has been busy.

The rural Story County man not only has working antique tractors in his farmyard, but he also operates what he calls a “museum.”

“I’ve been collecting Molines since 1985,” said Book as he sat inside the museum on a windy spring morning. “I grew up using Molines on the farm near Nevada. My dad was a Moline dealer from 1949 to 1962. I love these tractors and one thing lead to another, and, well, here we are with the largest collection of Moline Plow Company artifacts that we know of under one roof.”

The shelves are filled with a variety of Moline items; shot glasses, posters, mugs, posters and branded oil cans arranged neatly and labeled.

“Everything is for sale, make a reasonable offer,” he said.

His wife, Ruth Book, nodded in agreement.

“It is a hobby that has kept him busy,” she said with a smile. “He has enjoyed it and we’ve met some good friends along the way.”

Book’s museum tour is educational and historical. It details the history of three companies – the Moline Implement Company (formerly the Moline Plow Company), the Minnesota Steel and Machinery Company, and the Minneapolis Thresher Machine Company – combining forces in 1929, creating the Minneapolis-Moline Power Implement Company.

Moline shows

Seven men from Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin and Minnesota from the 2019 Moline Universal Tractor Reunion Planning Committee. The committee’s goal is to bring the first reunion of the Moline Universal tractors and implements to the center of the United States in Geneseo, Illinois, on the 100th anniversary of the Moline Universal D tractor.

Book said he is looking to invite farm history enthusiasts to join fellow Moline Plow Company admirers and collectors from around the world at the 2019 Antique Engine and Tractor Association Working Farm Show.

It will be held Sept. 13-15, 2019, in Geneseo, Illinois, and will feature all Moline Universal tractors.

“The reunion site is just a few miles from the original Rock Island factory where these machines were produced,” Book said. “In fact, the John Deere factory was a few miles away from the Moline Plow Company’s plant.”

A thresherman’s dinner, pie auction, train rides and tractor demonstrations are scheduled for the event.

Those interested in more information are asked to contact Book at (515) 231-6334 or via email at lgbook46@gmail.com.

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