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Rough and Tumble Historical Association, Inc. is a unique 501(c)(3) non-profit museum located on 33 acres in Lancaster County in PA that helps preserve America's Agricultural and Industrial history by holding events throughout the year. We have many operating exhibits as well as numerous Steam Traction Engines including the 2nd Oldest running Steam Traction Engine in the US, the Schiedler built in 1886 recently restored! See the video of the first test of this engine in our 2012 Photo Gallery.
Ride two special Steam Trains that loop around our grounds. There is a huge collection of Gas Engines including the Oldest Internal Combustion engine running in North America built by Otto and Langen in 1867. We have a large building of Stationary Steam Engines all running. You will see some of the best restored John Deere, IH, and Rumely tractors around to name a few. Our Model Shops have many very unique hand built items on display and running. Watch our Blacksmiths forging items. Founded in 1948, we are celebrating our 69th year in 2017 with the unique history as one of the longest and earliest running organizations of this type in the U.S.
Rough and Tumble is "The Most Complete Operating Steam and Gas Engine Show in the East"! Our Threshermen’s Reunion attracted thousands of visitors from across the U.S breaking attendance records last year. Come visit us and see up close the wide range of unique operating equipment of all types on our grounds. Counting Down to the Show!
The 69th R & T Threshermen's Reunion is the 2nd Oldest show in the Country to be held again August 16th to the 19th in 2017 featuring “Construction Equipment” with many unique antique diggers and crawlers running and featuring Hercules Gas Engines. We are also celebrating the 150th anniversary of the Otto and Langen atmospheric engine running at Rough and Tumble.
Welcome to the Rough and Tumble Web Site. Our site allows members and visitors to join, renew, and update their Membership and purchase Membership and Gift Shop items on line with their credit card via PayPal. Members can also sign-in and update their profile information, read R & T By-Laws, Club Info, and download and print the quarterly Whistle newsletter.
R & T Happenings and News:
1/16/17 Sad news to report, Past Rough and Tumble President and Volunteer Coordinator Lewis Frantz passed away today. More information will be available here shortly. The good news is that he will be reunited with his loving wife Joy Frantz in heaven. We will certainly miss Louie for all he did for the organization.
Come see the display at the Harrisburg Farm Show January 6th - 14th 2017! The Waterloo Boys of Southeastern, PA will be at the Farm Show. Information on the PA Farm Show is available here.
All of us at R&T would like to thank all the Members, Volunteers, and Visitors that came to Rough and Tumble this year. It was a safe year with continued growth in the organization with big plans for August and future shows.
The Rough and Tumble Pulling Committee is pleased to announce that starting this year (2017) we will be including Classic Tractors to our pulls along with the Antique Tractors. A new web page has been added for Tractor Pulling Information under R&T Information and can also be accessed here which included links to regulations and 2016 pulling results.
The Association is saddened to notify that long time member John L. Chandler, Jr., 73, of Delmar, died Sunday, January 8, 2017 at his home. He enjoyed tinkering on cars and was an avid John Deere enthusiast. Memberships included the Rough & Tumble Engineers Historical Association, Eastern Shore Threshermen & Collectors Association, First State Antique Tractors Club, Waterloo Boys of Southeastern Pennsylvania and the Tuckahoe Steam & Gas Association. Memorial contributions may be made in his memory to the Rough & Tumble Engineers Historical Association, P.O. Box 9, Kinzers, PA 17535 and can also be done here. More information on John is available here.
It is the time of year the autumn leaves are falling around Rough and Tumble. Volunteers are working at winterizing and storing away all the equipment on display and running for the year. There was a full crew this December 3 work day moving machinery and working on projects and leaves around the grounds. A special thanks for everyone that came out to help. The snacks, coffee, donuts, and cookies were tasty. Thank you Wayne and everyone else that brought work day treats!
The final Board meeting for 2016 was held on Saturday and the 2017 budget was voted on and approved by the Board. A special thanks was given to President Arthur Astle who is ending his 3 year term this year. Butch Biesecker will be the next Rough and Tumble President starting on January 2017.
The Annual Reunion Rehash meeting was held this weekend and the feedback was great from all the members and visitors on the Reunion. We are always listening to see how we can improve the Reunion with the thousands of people that come through the grounds.
If you would like to make a Donation to Rough and Tumble, we have a link here. We are a unique 501(c)(3) non-profit museum and could always use your support for the many projects we have going on between water infrastructure and equipment restoration among other areas. You can write off this donation on your taxes.
Our final show of the year was held October 7th and 8th celebrating “A Time of Harvest”. Special events were held for children on Saturday including the Pedal Tractor Pull, Harvest Rides, Needle in the Haystack, & other games and events for children including Pumpkin Face Painting and a Barrel Train Ride. Rough and Tumble equipment will be in operation from steam trains, gas engines, and the model shops to gas engines, steam traction engines, and more.
Steam School 2017 filled in a record 55 minutes at the Time of Harvest Show Friday morning. The School is filled with students and standbys. If you are interest in the next available 2018 steam school, come to Time of Harvest show in October 2017 to register for school. The video of our 2016 school is available here. The Steam School program at Rough and Tumble continues to be one of the most popular schools in the US. 2017 will feature the return of the Shay Railroad engine for students to operate.
Here are the results from the 2016 Thresherman’s Reunion Antique Tractor Pulls.
The 2017 R&T Brochure is also now available here and can also be found in our Resources. You can see all the show schedules for the year and information on our 69th Annual Threshermen’s Reunion. In 2017 we will be featuring Construction Equipment on display and running.
Rough and Tumble had a very successful 2016 68th Annual Threshermen’s Reunion. The Reunion was the 2016 Steam Expo where we we had over 107 Steam Engines. This was the one of the largest gathering of Steam Traction Engines in the US! This was an exciting show with many types of steam engines on the grounds.
The 68th Threshermen's Reunion set more new records in 2016. Another great weather week with no rain during the show and temperatures in the 80's! Flea market filled to capacity. Most exhibited equipment. Parking lot's filled to over flow capacity. Parade stands filled. The widest collection of parade machinery almost anywhere. Even our new web site broke records with over 1,800 visitors per day during the reunion. In 2017 we will be featuring Construction Equipment on display and running. Photos and Videos of the show have been added to the 2016 Photos and Videos page here.
The Shay railroad train boiler replacement is complete and was ran successfully at the Reunion. The Shay made many laps around Rough and Tumble and with a new steam dome! More info is available here.
This weekends Saturday Volunteer Activities can be seen on the Volunteer section in this weekend activities here. A special thanks for all the Volunteers that help make Rough and Tumble the great and unique organization it is today!
Rough and Tumble has received some great reviews on TripAdvisor. We thank all the many people that visit our unique Museum every year. The link to TripAdvisor with our reviews can be found here.
Rough and Tumble Volunteers have completed restoring our rare Coldwell Steam Lawn Mower and it is now operational for the special 2016 Steam Show. We now have the engine running on steam which can be seen running on steam above and here. This is the only operational steam mower in the world!
The Patriot News of Central PA wrote a special article on what Rough and Tumble has to offer a visit to our grounds during shows. You can read their article "Rough and Tumble's show of power is like no other", here.
Our Circa 1900's, Line Shaft "Machine Works" continues to grow and add more equipment. We would like to thank R & T Director Bud Burdy and his team for the beautiful job they are doing after much research on how to design and build the shop. You can see project photos in the Photo Albums. They are finding more interesting circa equipment as the project progresses. Note the ceiling mounted line shafting.
Bill Hazzard and his team have worked the Cooper Engine Project for many years from dismantling it in Ohio, to bringing it back to R & T, pouring concrete and installing the engine. Bill was able to turn over the engine with compressed air in the summer of 2012 to prove the mechanics. The next step was to complete the exhaust, fuel supply lines, and cooling system which is now complete. The engine first ran for 30 minutes on 7/20/13 as shown on the video. Look at the Cooper Engine Project and New Running Videos in our photo section. New Notes and an engine diagram were added to photos pages.
A Great Piece of Cooper History from Roger Kriebel has been added regarding the Cooper Engine. You can see that information here.