Posts Tagged With: John Deere Employee

John Deere Waterloo Boy Tractor

Even though tractors have become one of the machines that the company is best known for, John Deere didn’t invent the tractor. The first gasoline-powered tractor was invented/perfected by John Froelich in 1892.

In 1918, John Deere purchased the Waterloo Gasoline Engine Company, manufacturer of the Waterloo Boy Tractor. One of these first tractors was on display at the 175th Anniversary event at the World Headquarters. I’m not sure of the age of this specific tractor, but I’m guessing it was one of the originals, as later models were the famous John Deere green and yellow.

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A Green and Yellow Party!

I have survived not  one, but TWO John Deere 175th Anniversary events so far this month, one at the World Headquarters and one at John Deere Des Moines Works in Ankeny, IA.

I was a guest at one and a party planner at the other, so the experiences were a little different. I though coordinating speakers for 200 people at a time was lots of pressure till I got to coordinate the speaking for a show like this…

What do John Deere 175th Anniversary celebrations have in common?

For one thing, lots and lots of people. I heard it estimated that each event had over 10,000 people attend, and the event for Waterloo this summer and Harvester Works this fall are expected to be even bigger.

Both events had some great old machinery on display, too. I loaded galleries without much commentary on Google Plus and Facebook,  and I’ll work on getting updates with the stories behind the pictures.

My favorite tractor from the World Headquarters event was this Waterloo Boy tractor. The steeringwas controlled by a chain, the engine ran on kerosine, and part of the floor looked suspiciously like an old board, but it was definitely a recognizable tractor.

Plus, my easily-sunburnt self appreciates any machine with an umbrella.

The part of me that was always lucky enough to run the newest equipment on photo shoots is just amazed to see how far technology has come since then. Then again, my dad likes to point out that things I take for granted were huge innovations in their day as well.



My favorite tractor on display was a John Deere 6030, which is a little surprising since it was set up right beside a good-looking 4020 tractor and I will always have a soft spot in my heart for one of them.

But look at the wheels on that bad boy! I didn’t get the specs on this particular machine (the downside to working the show) but the Series did get above 200 hp. Some of the tractors built in Waterloo now make that look small, but it had to be an absolute MONSTER when it rolled off the line.

Another great part of the events is that they were open to both current employees and retirees. I got a chance to talk with some of the engineers and welders who built the first machines at the Des Moines Works back in the early 50s.

It’s amazing (ok, and a little intimidating!) to think my stories of working at John Deere might sound like their stories some day….

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Coming to you from Kansas City!

You may have noticed a complete lack of posting around here lately.  I know I’m not the most frequent of bloggers, but no posts in 20 days is a big gap, even for me.

Well, I’ve got a great reason- I’ve been in the process of moving!!

This post is coming to you from Kansas City, not Des Moines. I’m still in the same job for John Deere, I’m just going to be based from a home office. Des Moines is a great city and has been tons of fun, but Kansas City feels like home.

I’ll be back to Iowa quite often for this summer- there are 175th Anniversary parties to plan and attend!

It also means I’ll get to watch #Plant12 turn into growing season and #Harvest12 driving along I-35. It’s so exciting to see plants starting to come up in long green rows.

I also love to watch all the equipment getting shipped up and down the interstate.  I saw 7 Self-Propelled Sprayers on my last drive, and the time before I saw lots of hay tools and rotary cutters.

I’ve got lots of catch-up posts to write, too. I got to visit our turf-care factory in North Carolina in April, and I have been on the hunt for some historic deer statues. And I need to share some really cool news from Brazil.

Stay tuned, everybody. Life is good.

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Fight Fire with Tractors

A friend from North Dakota shared these videos of rural communities pulling together. It’s a ballet of big machines coming together to move bales away from a fire.

These guys make it look easy, but anyone who has ever seen me try to operate a loader will know that it takes a lot of practice to do things this smoothly.

Rural communities are amazing, and seeing people who buy John Deere equipment in action makes me extra proud to work for the company.

Language is a bit colorful (understandable under the circumstances!) so be careful with speakers at work.

Tractors Fighting Fire (part 1)

Tractors Fighting Fire (part 2)

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175 Years of Memories (including yours!)

 Got a John Deere story you’d like to share? Well, now’s the time to do it.

In honor of the company’s 175th Anniversary, the John Deere team is collecting customer memories and stories on the John Deere Facebook page. There’s also (surprisingly difficult!) John Deere trivia and new 175th Anniversary wallpapers that you can download.

I’ll have lots of 175th pictures and stories to post over the summer, I hope. It’s shaping up to be busy but lots and lots of FUN!

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One-of-a-kind, almost

There are exactly two of these in the world.

One is in Finland, where this many-jointed forestry machine was created as a concept.  The other is in the newly renovated John Deere Pavilion in Moline.

 I really wanted to climb in the cab and take it for a test drive, at least until I saw the feet. I can’t imaging trying to keep six of these things moving smoothly.

The machine itself is not actually made by John Deere (although it’s still a nice shade of green!). It was made by Timberjack, a subsidiary purchased in 2000. That accounts for the logo, too.










Pretty cool, huh?

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