Foster’s The Little Gem, 1933 (No 14638)
Traction Engines 1900-1933
This is a late model of a 5-n h p agricultural threshing machine. William Foster & Co Ltd was an agricultural machinery company based in Lincoln. The company can be traced back to 1846. William Foster purchased a flour mill and then proceeded to start manufacturing mill and threshing machinery. During the First World War they built the first tanks for the British Army. Fosters had a good reputation for making excellent threshing machinery. Many contractors preferred to use a Foster threshing drum and they were one of the few firms to make clover hullers. The threshing machine was introduced in the 1830’s and continued to be virtually the only means of separating grain into the 1940’s. Beneath the boiler is the belly tank which gave this machine the ability to run all day on one fill allowing the driver to take the engine to the water between moves from one stack of corn to another. This was an asset in days when labour costs were beginning to rise. This machine was held in stock by Fosters who sold it in 1938 to owners in Derbyshire who must have used it for threshing during World War II. The Little Gem can still be seen occasionally at Traction Rallies and has been a regular exhibitor at the Great Dorset Steam Fair at Tarrant Hinton near Blandford.
|Dimensions||44.5 × 35.5 cm|