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Amazing Oliver Pedal Tractor Collection
Donie Fischer, Waterville, Ohio, brought his Oliver pedal tractor collection to the recent Ohio Farm Science Review Show near London, Ohio. Showgoers were amazed by the neatly displayed collection of 55 working pedal tractors.
  Fischer has a total of 55 pedal tractors, all in working condition.
  He displays the tractors on a 25-ft. long wheeled cart with three shelves. He owns every one of the nine pedal tractor models that were made by Oliver. They include a Super 88, 880, 1800, 1850, 1855, Row Crop 88 (two versions), and White 1855. All the other ones he owns were custom built in recent years by friends Tom Magnuson, Rodney Cover and Gene Gregory.
  Fischer hauls the tractors in a traveling toy museum - a 30-ft. long enclosed cargo van trailer - that he brings mainly to shows. Inside is a display of 1/64, 1/32, 1/16, and 1/8-scale toys and other Oliver memorabilia.
  "Most people don't realize that most of my tractors were custom built. They think that some company must have mass produced them," says Fischer. "When I tell them the tractors aren't for sale, but that if they were prices would start at $2,000, they look at me like I'm nuts."
  Fischer started collecting Oliver toys in 1972, in the early years of toy collecting. "My little boy was playing in a sandbox with two Oliver toys, when my friend asked me why I was letting him play with such valuable toys. He offered me $500 apiece for them. People were just starting to collect farm toys then, and I happened to have two of the rarest toys going. That's when I decided to start collecting farm toys, as well as pedal tractors.
  "I farmed with Oliver tractors for many years, as did my dad and grandfather. I also have a collection of 23 real Oliver tractors. The first Oliver pedal tractor was built in 1948. They are very hard to find."
  Fischer says the rarest model of his nine original tractors is a 1960 Checkerboard 1800. "It was called a Checkerboard because it has a checkerboard grill. Oliver only made these pedal tractors for two years. It's worth about $3,000 today."
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Donie Fischer, 8020 Dutch Rd., Waterville, Ohio 43566 (ph 419 878-8660 or 419 261-0061; papadonie@aol.com).

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2007 - Volume #31, Issue #6