Machinery Pete’s Connection to John Deere Goes Back 105 Years!
Machinery Pete’s farm equipment roots lead back to Tolley, North Dakota in 1907 where his great grandmother’s 1/2 brother Rasmus Miller bought into the local Deere dealership
John Deere is celebrating its 175th year anniversary this year. Closing in on 200 years since John Deere’s plow revolutionized the world of agriculture and beyond.
Anniversaries are opportunities to reflect. What I’m struck by when I think about Deere’s amazing 175 year history are the people. John Deere and the early folks who helped him found the great company. All the folks who have bought, counted on and loved John Deere tractors and farm equipment over the generations. Loyal customers who have passed on their love and devotion to Deere green and what it stands for.
I also think about all the John Deere dealers over the years, their employees, their families, spread out across the world. Bringing John Deere quality to their little corners of the globe. This one hits close to home for me as I come from a long line of Deere dealers stretching all the way back to 1907.
In 1907 in the little northwestern North Dakota farming town of Tolley, my great grandmother’s 1/2 brother Rasmus Miller bought into the local Deere dealership. Rasmus brought the first Waterloo Boy tractors to northwestern North Dakota. In 1920 my great grandfather George Peterson had an opportunity to buy into the dealership with Rasmus looking to retire. Before George agreed he made a walk over to the one-room schoolhouse in Tolley to find my grand father Comart Peterson. George had a question to ask his son. George was a blacksmith. He knew iron, he knew equipment, he knew what farmers needed. What he didn’t know was math. He asked my grandfather Comart, then 13 years old, if he would help him with the books if he bought into the dealership.