A Vintage Tractor Stole My Heart

70 year old new to us Ford 2000 Tractor

Rochelle Neree

5/11/20233 min read

If ever an old tractor could steal my heart...it would be this one...

When we set out to find a new tractor for our old farm, turned orchard and creamery, we had no idea what would be in store for us. We had come dangerously close to buying the wrong tractor a time or two. My heart was always set on a classic, something as unique and timeless as I hope our orchard will someday be. But new shiny Kubota's seemed like the "logical choice" for a new budding farmer. Starting engines of tractor after tractor, my ears yearned to hear something that called to me. A softer muffler, a gentler start, less clunk and industry and more sweeping charm. Perhaps too much to ask of any tractor, too much to ask, I thought, entirely.

As each tractor I saw failed to meet my critical needs for character and function, I practically gave up on the search entirely. Even thinking I'd finally join the masses on the way to the Kubota dealer for shiny and new. But then I saw it, only hours after the post had been made, I found myself drawn to it. Almost as if it belonged here on our small modest orchard. Its humble beginnings echoing our own, I slipped my hat into what I imagined was a long list of eager buyers estatic to buy this restored classic Ford.

Forming my letter with truth and honesty, I'd hoped that perhaps this tractor, which had belonged for a lifetime to one meticulous and sentimental fellow farm family, would somehow find its way here. I waited a full night to have a response, not setting myself up for what I thought would be an inevitable let down. But then the email came, the offer to buy her had been extended graciously to us. Something about it felt kismet, like our orchard and farm often feels when things fall completely into place. We dashed in the truck with a borrowed trailer with no doubt in our mind we would be taking this one family-owned Ford 2000 who had been beautifully restored and barn kept its entire life home to our farm. Through hail and rain, we drove over 5 hours to meet the newest member of our farm, a vintage and restored Ford 2000 tractor.

When we saw the tractor, our cautious optimism fell away into pure delight. We didn't touch every button or look for any small imperfection, but when the engine was started, she spoke to me, smooth and more quiet than any tractor we'd ever heard, it was pure delight and we loaded her squarely onto our trailer and never once turned back, accept to hug the family for letting us give a new lifetime or two or three to something that they found hard to let go of. This tractor had a story like ours, beloved and timeless, humble and earthy, her tires had turned the dirt for generations as we hope it will now do for our small but budding farm, orchard and creamery.

We can't imagine a better time on our farm, as we turn land to trees and soil to fruit. Every second of it has been exhilarating. Sitting on this classic blue beauty, we affectionately call blueberry, is a sign of things to come. Of the next generation of first generation farmers making a difference for generations to come. And while I have no doubt we will someday have a fleet of tractors to farm with, we will always remember the day we brought blueberry home to start this beautiful journey with us. Welcome home blueberry. And thank you to the family who kept her for 70 years for entrusting her with us.

Vintage Tractor steals our hearts...