Antique Machinery Park exhibits of interest

A snapshot of some of the more interesting exhibits at the AMP

The Antique Machinery Park has implements such as

An open house Sept. 15 consisted of many interesting exhibits and some invited collectors, covering not only the five-acre site but also several periods of machinery development, from the labour of the horse to the gas motors and diesel engines wherever energy was needed as we developed many farms; a huge variety of trucks, old hand tools; an operating sawmill and a deep mine cage.

I could connect with a plot of the exhibits as I had experience in my early youth with many of them.

We have come a long way from when we started opening the country to now when physical labour is of less value and capital through technology and the computer steer our lives.

Exhibits of note would be:

• a fresno which was pulled by a horse and dumped by the operator. As railway and highway grades were built, small amounts at a time, until unbelievable cuts and fills were made. (see the old PGE grades in Ten Mile Park)

• a Gilcrest Jack – a heavy duty tool when big weights, such as loaded rail cars, had to be lifted

• a Caterpiller 20 – an early small machine with crude controls and unique problems (I drove one at Skutz Falls on the Cowichan River and, winching too hard, lifted the track spring out of its container resulting in the engine rising and tilting backward)

• farm tractors – a huge Godsend when long hours were required – the fuel was gas or diesel, not a bale of hay. No harness to put on and then take off, no wandering either.

• metal technology – when strength that was needed by huge castings – now alloys are a fraction of the weight and very strong

• gun collection – this was an invited display and well worth a visit. Some pieces were a Sten gun (famous for taking your finger tips off as the shell casings ejected – there was a right way to hold them.)

• a Harley Davidson 45 motor bike, 1940 – for dispatch riders before radios came along to transmit messages. (I had one and recall one gas fillup cost 63 cents at Qualicum Beach on Vancouver Island)

• a shaft cage from a deep mine – when a small group of men would be closed in to the cage and lowered several 1,000 feet to the workings where the sun never shines. Your life depended on that cable raising you after a day of candlelight or electric torch. (I experienced this at Island Mountain Mine in Wells.)

• Quincy coach, 1880s – it’s hard to imagine bouncing along in one of these, all day until the next roadhouse. We cover 10 times the distance in our cars now with air conditioning.

At the park you can go back into the recent past for a few minutes to see where your kin laboured to make this life easier.

Andy Motherwell is an amateur historian and regular Observer columnist.

Just Posted

Quesnel RCMP arrest alleged car thief

A police dog was called in to track the suspect this morning in North Quesnel

BC BUDGET: New spaces a step to universal child care

Fees reduced for licensed daycare operators

BC BUDGET: NDP cracks down on speculators, hidden ownership

Foreign buyers’ tax extended to Fraser Valley, Okanagan, Vancouver Island

BC BUDGET: Payroll tax replaces medical premiums

Health spending to increase $1.5 billion for drugs, primary care teams

Quesnel interconnector meeting draws a big crowd

Feb. 19’s meeting had people lined up outside waiting to get in

VIDEO: Top 10 B.C. budget highlights

The NDP is focusing on childcare, affordable housing and speeding up the elimination of MSP premiums

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Yelling vulgar slur at reporter not a crime says judge

Judge rules ‘vulgar’ slur against reporter was not a public disturbance

B.C. runner takes silver at Pan American cross-country championships

Tyler Dozzi’s medal pushes U20 Team Canada to gold finish

Hydaburg makes it three in a row

Hydaburg came back from 10 points down in the second half to beat Aiyansh

Kitkatla end 54 year drought with title win

The Warriors defeated Hydaburg 70-67 in overtime to win the 2018 All Native Tournament title

UBCO students to get medical cannabis coverage

Kelowna - The pilot project will be implemented in April

BC BUDGET: NDP push for purpose-built rentals in ‘historic’ $1.6B investment

Hundreds of thousands of new low- and middle-income units coming over three years

BC BUDGET: More for wildfire recovery, campsites

NDP government to hire 20 more Conservation Officers this year

Most Read