70 HP Cooper Bessemer was put in operation on Gillispie
Road (Ritchie County, WV) on Johnnie's homeplace in 1956 and continued to operate there until about 1980. It pumped natural
gas into the Hope gas line when they were bucking high line pressure. The engine was also used in the summer months to repressure
the storage fields. Granddad and Uncle Pete serviced and maintained the engine while in operation. I remember going
with them and my brothers, Jim and Bob, on a daily basis to oil the machine.
Hildreth Supply purchased it and took it to Spencer,
WV. I, Johnnie, was able to purchase it from Hildreth Supply in the summer of 2004. Finally in February 2011 we
found a drop deck trailer to mount the engine permanentlyon. Soon there after we loaded it onto the trailer and started working it.
First by cleaning out years of grime. We went through every nook and cranny. Since our work was slow we were able
to commit our time to getting the big beast ready to show. We spent almost two months solid working on it with help
from very special friends and family. After hours of sanding off all the paint, plumbing it up, repainting and getting
the trailer ready, we were able to show it for the first time in July 2011 at By the Lake Antique Equipment Show in
We would like to thank some very special people for
their help in getting the Cooper Bessemer up and show ready.
Bob Boston and Dan Easterday for helping get the engine
loaded onto the trailer.
Jim Boston for helping with plumbing.
Dan Easterday for his countless hours of support and
help but mostly his advice.
Devinn Britton for his hours and hours spent clearing
the old paint off and sanding to get it ready for its new coat of paint.
Chuck Morrison for his hours spent doing all the welding
on the trailer.
Proudly shown by Johnnie and Kathy Boston