The Big Bend Historical Society has assembled a collection of farm tools that have been donated to the organization over the years and displayed them at Northeast Anne Street, on a vacant lot on the north side of Main Street. A grain drill, binder, three bottom ploughs, a hay loader, a tumblebug, a subsoiler, and a combine are included in the collection.
Binders and threshing machines existed prior to swathers and combines. Grain was cut and bound into sheaves, which the binder simply dropped on the ground. Ideally, a team of three men on end would then stack the sheaves with the grain heads on top to dry. These same guys picked up the sheaves and threw them onto a wagon, which then transported them to the thresher for threshing after the grain had properly dried. It took a lot of ᴍᴀɴual labor, including all the workers needed to run the thresher and sack the grain. Today, one person is capable of handling the entire business.
Farmers were able to sow more because they could harvest more. Therefore, McCormick’s creation of the reaper decreased the likelihood of food shortages or possibly famine. According to legend, before McCormick’s technology, families would struggle to harvest enough grain in the fall to sustain them until the next harvest. Even a highly trained farmer may only be able to harvest two acres of grain in a single day. One guy and a horse could reap vast fields in a single day using a reaper. Thus, very vast farms with hundreds or even thousands of acres were feasible.
The grain was cut by the early McCormick horse-drawn reapers, which fell onto a platform where it could be raked up by a ᴍᴀɴ walking next to the machine. McCormick’s farm machinery business increased steadily as later models continued to incorporate useful features. By the turn of the 20th century, McCormick reapers were able to thresh wheat and pack it into bags for storage or shipment, in addition to cutting it.
McCormick displayed his most recent design at the Great Exhibition of 1851 in London. There was a lot of interest in the American machine. In a contest against a British-made reaper in July 1851 on an English farm, McCormick’s reaper triumphed. The world had already expanded when the McCormick reaper was brought back to the Crystal Palace, the location of the Great Exhibition. The American machine quickly rose to the top of the must-see list among the crowds visiting the exhibition. As Chicago established itself as the Midwest’s railroad hub in the 1850s, McCormick’s business expanded because his equipment could be transported across the nation. The proliferation of reapers led to an increase in grain production in the United States.
Given that they were more prevalent in the North, it has been suggested that McCormick’s farming machinery may have had an effect on the Civil War. Therefore, the impact of farmworkers leaving for war on grain output was lessened. The impact of farmhands joining the military was much greater in the South, where hand tools were more prevalent. The business McCormick built kept expanding in the years after the Civil War. The Haymarket Riot, a pivotal moment in American labor history, was sparked by the strike at the McCormick’s plant in 1886.
Let’s see Using a McCormick wheat binder to bind wheat – An amazing Agriculture machine in the ᴀᴡᴇsome video below.
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Video resource: Chris Rolke