By Adam Tychonski
September 5, 2018 - Ohio's 15th annual Old Construction & Mining Equipment Show is scheduled for this weekend.
The Ohio Valley Chapter of the Historical Construction Equipment Association will hold the event on Ohio 519, between U.S. 22 and New Athens. The show runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.
Antique trucks, construction and mining equipment will be on display and in operation throughout the weekend. Equipment owned by the Harrison Coal & Reclamation Historical Park, members of the park, Ohio Valley Chapter of the Historical Construction Equipment Association, Antique Caterpillar Machinery Owners Club Chapter 22 and other groups will have items on display or in operation. The equipment includes draglines, shovels, trucks, crawlers and dozers.
“The event has become a miners and construction workers reunion,” according to a statement by the park. “Many people that have worked or currently still work in the mining, construction and excavating industries have attended the show in the past. Many tell their stories of the machinery of the past and the giants long gone.”
One of the signature items on display are the operators cab and bucket from The Silver Spade. The Bucyrus-Erie 1950-B shovel — one of two that moved dirt for surface mining operations in Eastern Ohio — was scrapped in 2007 after efforts to preserve it failed. The operators cab was painted last year to its original colors from when it was built in 1965 for Hanna Mining Co.
Show times and special events are the only times the location is open to the public. This year’s show was in jeopardy after leases were canceled in the area back in December because the land had been sold.
“We would like to thank everyone involved that worked hard to make sure the show could happen this year at the location it has been held at since it’s beginning,” according to the park.
The organizers are trying to get a steam traction engine to pull a piece of construction equipment for this year’s show. A Cat D8 cable blade dozer recently donated by the Nick Puskarich family to the Harrison Coal & Reclamation Historical Park also is hoped to be on the grounds by show time and pushing dirt.
This year’s show is being dedicated to Dave McDonnell, of Germantown, who lost his battle with cancer in November 2017. McDonnell and his wife, Nancy, would bring antique trucks and a Cat D4 dozer to the show. He would help operate and help others maintain machinery.
Those wishing to exhibit antique trucks, construction equipment or mining equipment — surface or underground — are welcome. Machinery, volunteers and equipment operators have came from Western Pennsylvania, Columbus, Dayton/Cincinnati area, Northeast and Southeast Ohio in the past. Exhibitor camping will be available on site. Photo and history displays are also welcome. Friday is set up day for anyone wishing to bring in his or her equipment.
A southern-style barbecue food stand by Two Guys and a Grill Southern Style Barbeque also will be at the show. Some of the tentative food items include pulled pork, smoked ham, loaded baked potato and other items. There is an admission cost.
Find Old Construction & Mining Equipment Show on Facebook at www.facebook.com/OCMES. The Harrison Coal & Reclamation Historical Park and the Historical Construction Equipment Association-Ohio Valley Chapter also can be found on Facebook.
The Antique Caterpillar Machinery Owners Club-Chapter 22 will having a meeting at the grounds about 6:15 p.m. Saturday.