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Pawnee Celebrates Steam Era At Steam Engine Show

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Every first weekend in May, the folks up in Pawnee host a celebration of a time when steam powered almost everything on America's farms. Every first weekend in May, the folks up in Pawnee host a celebration of a time when steam powered almost everything on America's farms.
The coal fuels the fire to heat the water to produce the steam to power the tractor. The coal fuels the fire to heat the water to produce the steam to power the tractor.
Bob Lynch has been here almost from the beginning of the show in Pawnee, so he knows a little bit of something about it all. Bob Lynch has been here almost from the beginning of the show in Pawnee, so he knows a little bit of something about it all.
PAWNEE, Oklahoma -

Every first weekend in May, the folks up in Pawnee host a celebration of a time when steam powered almost everything on America's farms, at the Pawnee Steam Show.

Mike McKnight of Mason Tennessee gave us a ride to the coal pile on his steam powered tractor. The coal fuels the fire to heat the water to produce the steam to power the tractor.

It can take hours from no fire at all to build up enough steam pressure to actually get one of these beasts moving.

Bob Lynch has been here almost from the beginning of the show in Pawnee, so he knows a little bit of something about it all.

"This is my 34th consecutive year," Lynch said. "These are the first and second generation internal combustion engines that replaced the steam traction engines."

They were started with gasoline, when the engine heated up they switched to coal oil, kerosene.

"These were made in the teens, the 20s and the early 30s," he said.

His pride and joy is a 1950 Dodge Power Wagon. He still uses it for light hauling, but don't get behind him on the road, it's pretty slow.

The Pawnee Steam and Gas Engine Show Runs through Sunday, you can get directions here.

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