National Pike Steam, Gas & Horse Association Hosts Show

Mon June 02, 2008 - National Edition

The National Pike Steam, Gas & Horse Association Inc.’s annual spring show was held May 17 and 18 at its fairgrounds located 4 mi. west of Brownsville, Pa., on Route 40.

The show, an annual event held in conjunction with the National Road Festival, featured all types of venerable construction equipment including two working steam shovels, numerous gas-powered shovels, draglines, backhoes, clamshells, crawler tractors, scrapers, graders and other earthmoving equipment. Old-time farm tractors, gas engines and oil field equipment also were on display.

Hundreds of visitors from near and far braved wet weather to attend the event. Some, like Bob Kelly, McDonald, Pa., came to show their machines. Kelly brought his fully restored working 1913 Thew Type O steam shovel, which was one of the featured items of the event. Kelly said the restoration work took about two years. Dave Geis traveled all the way from Seward, Neb., to show his Cat D4 tractor with Adams scraper and to enjoy the show.

Other visitors were there to watch as the vintage machines were put to work on the association’s grounds, demonstrating their abilities and the endurance of antique craftsmanship. Still others got a chance to try out some of the machines for themselves.

In addition to the equipment show, the 35th annual National Road Show included an antique car and truck show, a flea market, a craft show, a shingle mill, an antique rock crusher and a blacksmith. Events stretched for 90 mi. along Route 40 in Somerset, Fayette and Washington counties. Two wagon trains followed the route, one of which made a stop at the fairgrounds.

Show organizers were pleased with turnout, saying that the weather rarely interferes with the size of the crowd.