We needed a tractor, but we lived from payday to payday back then and couldn't afford one. I remember Cliff and his brother, Phil, cutting weeds taller than themselves with a couple of scythes.
Cliff was glad to have that tractor, but the brakes were undependable on it; he almost killed Phil's boy, Randy, one time when the tractor got away from them. So we had a tractor, such as it was; but we were badly in need of a brush hog to maintain our twenty acres.
The other day I was scrounging through old mementoes and found the bill of sale from the next tractor Cliff purchased after that one, a used Ford 8N tractor with a brand new brush-hog/mower.
Click on the picture to make it bigger. The tractor cost $485 and the mower was $275.
I'm still wondering how we came up with that down payment. Seriously. We were young, with a baby boy and a mortgage, and there was no extra money. My parents were sometimes good for a quick loan, so perhaps we borrowed the down payment from them and paid them back a little at a time. Lord knows we did that several times over the years.
Cliff put that little Ford tractor to work, clearing every bit of land that could be cleared. He's had many tractors since then, but I doubt he's enjoyed any of them more than that first really good, dependable tractor. That same tractor now goes for $2,000 and up. When we had ours, it was just an old tractor. Now it's an antique. But you know what? There are hundreds of them around, still running.
They don't make 'em like that any more.