HICKORY, Pa. — Enthusiastic fans of antique construction equipment came from many parts of the United States and several foreign countries to take part in the Historical Construction Equipment Association’s 23rd national convention held recently in Brownsville, Pa. in conjunction with the annual National Pike Steam Gas and Horse Association’s summer show.
The expansive collection of old machinery and good weather attracted record crowds throughout the event.
Bob Kelly of McDonald, Pa., owns the one-of-a-kind Thew, Type 0 steam shovel that was displayed as this year’s featured machine. It was built by the Lorain Co. in Lorain, Ohio in 1913.
The well-used steam shovel was discovered in Ontario, Canada by Kelly and returned to the United States in 1999, where it was restored it to its original glory.
Many other renovated shovels, including a 1927 Erie B steam shovel, were in operation.
Also moving the earth were gasoline and diesel shovels, draglines, backhoes, bulldozers, scrapers, graders and other construction machines from a bygone era. On display were a multitude of restored machines, including Caterpillar Sixties, Thirties, Fifteens, RD4 and many others.
A newly refurbished Unit shovel and a Mack built locomotive were shown on their lowboy trailers. There was also a large display of antique trucks and cars.
There was a bus trip to Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater and Kentucky Knob for those who were interested in seeing more of the area’s attractions.
The weekend was devoted to operating and watching equipment, checking out vendors and by visiting with old friends. The event was topped off with a banquet, an auction and short business meeting.
Historical Construction Equipment Association will meet Sept. 18-20, 2009, in Bowling Green, Ohio.
National Pike shows will be held at Brownsville May 16-17 in conjunction with National Pike Days. The main show is August 7-9, 2009.