Sunday, March 13, 2016

Multiple Grain Elevators per Town

I can understand why a town would have a couple of elevators --- one would specialize in grinding livestock feed for the local farmers while the other would specialize in shipping the grain out of town to a processor or for export.

Then I came across this picture of 8 elevators in one town. The horses provided a clue. Expediently you could not build a wooden elevator bigger than what you see. I've seen a lot of pictures of wooden elevators, and this is about as big as they get. So to expand the capacity, you added more elevators. After the horse-and-wagon days, concrete silos were developed and you can build whatever capacity the town needed by just adding more silos. Later, an elevator would add more steel bins. For example, Ashkum, IL, is an example of growing a wood elevator by adding silos and then adding bins. Note the boxcars in the background. Covered hopper cars were invented several decades after this photo was taken. Grain was hauled in boxcars.

Gary Yaeger posted
Alberta Elevator Pool.

Gary Yaeger posted
Elevators at Dutton, Montana.

Gary Yaeger posted
11-11-1916, a glut of horses and wagons at Big Sandy's elevators. The price shot up (and down again) during WWI and farmers were trying to capitalize on the situation.
Sam Bezner Well....things haven't changed emoticon

So true. You can't see it from this angle, but the line of trucks on the left goes quite a ways back before it curves around to form the line closer to the elevator. When I saw that, I immediately turned around from where I took this picture and left. I took pictures of this side of the elevator on a different trip when there were no trucks unloading.

Gary Yaeger posted
Lewistown's elevator district postcard of old.
I just could not resist including this photo as part of a collection for an elevator.

Gary Yaeger posted
Uncle Fritz at the wheel of Aultman & Taylor 30-60 gas tractor #47, Grandpa Yaeger & Grandma's cousin, as the grain crop is being hauled to Glengarry, ca 1911.
Ken Bryan posted
Elevator row in downtown Conrad, Montana.
Andrew Tuttle posted
Depot and elevators in Highwood, Montana
Jerry Penry posted
Jerry Penry commented
I believe the last one standing
 of the 8 shown in the old photo.
Taken September 2014.
Jan Normandale posted
Davidson SK, 2015 : Pioneer wooden grain elevator
[This illustrates that at least some people in Canada knew how to build big wooden elevators. To my surprise, it still exists (view 2). Furthermore, the little town still has a more traditional sized elevator. Although it has had a wooden expansion added.]
A Flickr photo built big with wood and then converted to concrete silos. In fact, it looks like they are refurbishing the wood part of the elevator.

Edward Duke posted
4-11-16, McLaughlin, SD, old elevator.John Harker Quite an elaborate dust control set up in its day, a lot of them had nothing at all.
[Another that expanded with a big wood elevator between the era of building additional small elevators and building concrete silos.]
Jan Mormandale posted
Chinook MT - Aug 2013
Jan Normandale posted
Grandin ND - 2013
Keith Turley I once hauled a load of birdseed out of here.

1 comment:

  1. Cool stuff, Dennis! I just found you blog via a person asking about one of my photos you've shared on this post. I wandered through some of your other posts and really enjoy your content and commentary.