Introduction | FORDSON Model 'F' |
International Harvester Farmall Model 'H' |
Ford Model '2N' | Case Model 'VAC-12' |



John Deere started building steel plows out of his blacksmith shop in Grand Detour, Illinois. He built and marketed a polished, self-scouring plow made from high-quality steel saw blades in 1837 and used that success to create a powerful agricultural equipment manufacturing company.



In 1848, the railroad bypassed Grand Detour, and as a result, John Deere moved his young company to Moline, Illinois, where he could bring in steel and ship plows out around the country.





In the late-1910's Deere & Company began building farm tractors, and soon made a name for itself by offering reliable twin-cylinder tractors and implements.



The John Deere two-cylinder tractor stands as an icon of modern farming, and represents the transition from animal-power to machine-power. From the trademark Deere green-and-yellow paint to the distinctive sound of the classic “Johnny Popper” exhaust, Deere & Company tractors have a unique place in history.




In the 1930's the industrial world discovered design, and the trend was sleekly styled machines ranging from refrigerators and furniture to automobiles and steam locomotives. John Deere turned to the design firm of Henry Dreyfuss to style its tractors. Dreyfuss' emphasis on science and function as well as sleek lines created a line of timelessly attractive machines.)




Henry Dreyfuss' most famous products include the Twentieth Century Limited of the New York Central System, the Princess telephone, and the John Deere Model A and Model B tractors . The Dreyfuss firm created a simply elegant tractor, which was the beginning of a long, c ooperative relationship between the firm and Deere & Company. Dreyfuss design touches continued to grace John Deere tractors well into the 1960's.





A turning point in the history of Deere tractors came in 1947. A new factory opened in Dubuque, Iowa, designed specifically to produce Deere's answer to the Ford-Ferguson 9N...the new M series. The Deere M had been the subject of experiments for a few years. It was designed to replace the smaller Deere tractors and be a complete system for smaller farms and a useful support tractor on larger farms.




The Model M of 1947 departed from usual John Deere practice by having its two-cylinder engine standing upright, mounted longitudinally in the frame; all other Deere's had their engines laid flat with cylinders facing forward. The M also used the engine as a structural member, making it a “unit design”.



Several new features marked the Model M. The padded seat included inflatable cushions and was adjustable fore and aft, while the steering wheel could be telescoped through a one-foot range, allowing the driver to either sit or stand while operating the tractor.

Introduction of the MT was planned for late-1947, but postwar material problems and enormous demand for the original model meant that it was December 1948 before the MT could be put into production. The MT was essentially the same tractor as the Model M, but there were some significant new offerings.



The Model MT (for Tricycle) was finally added to the John Deere line in 1949. The MT was taller and more versatile for row crops and vegetables than the Model M. The MT offered rear wheels that were fully adjustable on the axle from 48 to 96 inches wide, at any setting the operator chose, and one man could do the job of resetting the wheels. The MT featured a choice of two types of “narrow” front wheels. One, was a single front wheel, carried “bicycle” style. The other mounted two wheels close together on an axle that tilts them so that they nearly touch at the bottom. In both cases, the idea was that the front wheel drove between two crop rows, while the rear wheels could be adjusted to straddle the same two rows (different crops are planted in different row widths). These are often referred to as “row crop” tractors because of that design intent.





The MT also boasted the first Dual Touch-O-Matic system, with a split rockshaft to control left-or-right or front-and-rear implements. A 101-cubic-inch engine delivered about 14 drawbar horsepower and just under 20 HP at the belt pulley.




The John Deere Model MT tractor on display at the Museum was manufactured in 1949, the first year of production and weighs 3,183 lbs. It has been completely restored to its 1949 factory appearance.



SERIAL NUMBER : MT 15053. Operational.




Though the MT was extremely durable, productive and popular (with over 30,000 units produced), it remained in the line only until 1952. Now, decades after it was built, this wonderful old machine proves that 'Nothing Runs Like A Deere”.


Introduction | FORDSON Model 'F' |
International Harvester Farmall Model 'H' |
Ford Model '2N' | Case Model 'VAC-12'|


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