HomeThe MarketMecum goes international with vintage tractors in Canada

Mecum goes international with vintage tractors in Canada


1920 Allis-Chalmers 6-12 is among oldest examples from the brand | Mecum Auctions photos
1920 Allis-Chalmers 6-12 is among oldest examples from the brand | Mecum Auctions photos

Mecum Auctions’ Gone Farmin’ division is adding a sale to its 2017 calendar, offering more than 300 vintage tractors July 14-15 at its first international on-site event, selling the George Nesbitt Allis-Chalmers Collection in Renfrew, Ontario, Canada.

In its news release, Mecum said Nesbitt’s is “one of the world’s most comprehensive vintage Allis-Chalmers tractor collections” and includes “nearly ever model Allis-Chalmers has ever produced from the early teens up through the 1980s.”

According to the website for Nesbitt’s tractor museum, the tractors have been stored inside three buildings. Most of the tractors have been restored or are in running condition.

On the site, Nesbitt writes that he remembers being 7 years old and his father using an AC Model 60 combine pulled by a Farmall M tractor. Young Nesbitt filled out a form in a magazine to request more information about Allis equipment and before long the local dealer stopped by to meet him.

“I thought I would get a kick in the backside from my dad but the two of them laughed and the dealer, Bill Larwell from Ottawa, gave me a few pieces of AC literature,” Nesbitt adds. “That hooked me on Allis Chalmers.”

Allis-Chalmers was founded in 1901 in the merger of companies that produced everything from industrial and mining equipment to steam engines and milling machinery. The company produced its first farm implement, a rotary plow, in 1913 and its first tractor a year later.

Nesbitt bought his own 200-acre dairy farm when he was 20 years old and soon acquired his first AC tractor with a loader, disc and furrow plow.

1970 220 FWA is the muscle-car of tractors
1970 220 FWA is the muscle-car of tractors

A fire in the dairy barn claimed Nesbitt’s cows, but in burying them he discovered quality gravel and went into the gravel and stone business as well as raising beef cattle. He later returned to farming, retiring in 2012 to pursue his tractor-collecting hobby.

Featured in the auction are such rare Allis-Chalmers tractors as a 1920 6-12, 1966 D-17 Series 4 High Crop and a 1969 190XT Series 3 diesel. Mecum notes that several tractors may appeal to muscle car collectors, especially the eight-tired 1970 220 FWA.

In addition to tractors, around 100 pieces of farm parts and tires will be on the auction docket.

Mecum notes that the auction will be conducted in Canadian dollars.

Gone Farmin’s next sale is scheduled for June 2-3 when it offers the Ron Drosselmeyer Collection of vintage John Deere tractors in Muscatine, Iowa.

Larry Edsall
Larry Edsall
A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

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