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Local Focus – Global Reach

Posted by MFish

I was in high school and gotten a job on the old
stationery baler. These were three wired and were used long
before the introduction of the two wire or string bale.

Here is my story.
Baling hay, back when I was young.
My first job was to be a "back wirer".
That meant it was under the stationery baler.
My job was to push a long wire through
A, three wire wooden block that separated the hay
So it could be shaped into a bale.
The head wirer would put two, top and bottom, wires
Through the board and I would secure them.
This task had to be done quickly or you could not connect
The wires. If we were baling Alfalfa, the bale
Could weigh as much as 130 lbs.
We were paid by the ton.
I earned .27 cents per ton and when the hay was good
We could bale over 100 tons a day.
The disadvantage of this job, was the collection of hay dust
Upon my sweaty face and arms as it would cover
Everything. If the wind was blowing one side of my face
Would be White with dust, the other side, just dirty.
I was living at home, so at the end of the day
I would go there so I could clean up and shower.
My Dad would start sneezing as soon as I walked in the door,
As he had hay fever. I didn't at that time but find it ironic
That I do have that today.
The above memories have a great significance to me as the
Stationery Baler that I worked on is no longer used.
As the "Pickup Balers would pick up the hay and spit out a bale
Which went down a belt to a wagon or truck that ran along side
The Baler.

I was truly, a fortunate son, during those changing times.

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