Rare Wiard Plow up for auction
I was at the Bontrager auction house today talking with Todd Jantzi and looking at all the farm and other equipment being set out for this Saturday's auction when he said, "Come here. I want to show you something." He said, "I'm really proud of this." and he opened a storage shed and said, "We have a Wiard Plow."
Todd said an Amish gentleman brought it in to be sold at auction, but he doesn't know where the Amish farmer got it from.
As you can see from the picture above, it's in pretty good shape.
Wiard Plows were manufactured in Batavia from the 1800s some time until well into the 20th Century. You can still find a "Wiard Plow" sign painted on a red building off of Swan Street, behind the Harvester complex.
George Wiard was one of the leading citizens of Batavia in the 19th Century. This biography says:
Mr. Wiard is one of the progressive men of this town. He has always been foremost in promoting enterprises that tended to the advancement of the educational, moral and religious interests of Batavia. He was for many years a member of the board of education and served five years as its president. He was chairman of the building committee that erected the Baptist church and was one of the committee having in charge the construction of the city water-works. He has been a director of the Genesee County Permanent Loan and Building Association since its organization in 1878 and for the last eighteen years has been the president. Politically he has always been a Republican.