The Steele County Historical Society will be hosting the annual Gus' Station Car Show and Fundraiser on Saturday, July 22. Registration begins at 8AM and is $5 per vehicle. The show itself runs 8:30AM to noon with free admission. An egg bake breakfast will be served from 8:30-10:30AM. Admission to the car show is free.

A very special treat will be the showing of an ultra-rare Big Four tractor. This 1911 has been completely restored by Al Severson at his shop in Bixby. Just over 20 known examples of this tractor remain, with five of them overseas. Al actually owns two and has a third one that he is restoring for a party on the East Coast. The Big Four featured the first four-cylinder engine in a tractor and was made in the Twin Cities by Gas Traction Co.

Severson purchased the tractor from a party near Siren, Wisconsin, in 2010. It consisted of four wheels, a frame, a junk radiator, fuel tank that was bad and smashed fenders. Al then proceeded to build a new engine, transmission, canopy and sheet metal in his Bixby shop. The tractor was rated 30 horse on the draw bar and 60 horse on the pulley.

If you take a look at the main photo of me standing by the wheel, you get an idea of its size. The wheels are 24 inches wide. The Big Four also has a 110-gallon water tank and weighs in at just under 20,000 pounds.

This tractor made its public debut at the Blooming Prairie 4th of July celebration. Come out Saturday and be one of the few people to actually see a Big Four tractor in person.

Take a look and hop on board. Let's go for a ride on a Big Four tractor.


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    The Big Four's Hood

    The Big Four has a 40-gallon gasoline tank.

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    A poster advertising the Big Four tractor.

    Tamara Gruhot / Townsquare Media
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    Missing something?

    A Big Four tractor minus the engine.

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    Crank to start

    The silver part to the left of the steering wheel is where you would insert the crank for starting.