Chris Wathen, a famous tractor collector, will be holding an auction put on by Dimmet Auction Service in Evansville, Indiana on August 21st featuring a total of 24 tractors and different pieces of farm equipment. Wathen’s collection includes everything from a 1981 Steiger Tiger III ST-470 to 1930’s & 1940’s Farmall tractors and even a 1950 International Harvester TD-6. Although Wathen’s collection includes a handful of great pieces, many collectors have their eye on the extremely rare Jackson 4-44 tractor, which will be up for grabs for the first time in decades! Additionally, this tractor has been re-powered with a 6V-92 Detroit, making it even more unique.
Jackson Manufacturing Co. only built 16 tractors between 1969 and 1972 and the 4-44 in this auction happens to be one of them! Erval Jackson, a producer in North Dakota at the time, started Jackson Manufacturing Co. in 1969 and it was already out of business by 1972. Many inside the industry believe Jackson was very similar to producers in his area at the time as many searched for new ways to create bigger tractors due to the large areas of land they had to farm in the Great Plains area. It’s worth mentioning, the most popular examples of these tractors being invented include the Steiger and Big Bud brands. Overall, Jackson created three models in his short stint including the Jackson 4-44 4WD 210 hp with a Cummins engine, the Jackson 4-53 4WD 160 hp with a Detroit Diesel, and the Jackson 534 4WD 265 hp with a Detroit Diesel.
Why do so many collectors want this tractor? As far as many collectors inside the industry know… this is the only 4-44 re-powered with a Detroit 6V-92 Silver Series in the world. It’s been said the previous owner wanted more power when he first bought the tractor, so he decided to pull out the original Cummins V504C and replace it with the 6V-92. Keep in mind, many inside the tractor collecting industry have no idea what something like this could sell for as a Jackson tractor hasn’t been sold in over 25 years. For the most part, it sounds like it is a matter of how bad someone wants it and what kind of history them may have with the Jackson brand.
Wathen owned over 50 collector tractors in 2018 including everything from Steiger, Big Bud, Versatile, Wagner, International Harvester, Case IH, Allis-Chalmers, FORD, Oliver, Minneapolis-Moline, CO-OP, Jackson, Coleman, and homemade tractors such as Wampascat, Brute, Euctor, and many more machines. Keep in mind, since 2018, the collection has grown even larger! Click HERE to watch a video put on Big Tractor Power about Wathen’s collection. It’s worth noting, this auction will also include a 1934 McCormick-Deering I12, Minneapolis-Moline G1000, and a Massey Ferguson 97. Click HERE to see the full auction! (Source: Tractor Zoom, Dimmet Auction Service, & Ryan Roossinck)