JUMP showcases 54 vintage tractors and antique farm equipment dating as far back as 1885. These inspiring examples of industrial art and innovation connect our agricultural roots to the future of downtown Boise.
The tractor collection is available to tour on your own or sign up for a free guided tractor tour every Wednesday at noon. You can also contact us to schedule a private tour as part of a JUMP Experience. To sign up for a tour. Call 208.639.6610, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or stop by our lobby to check availability.
Why are there tractors at JUMP?
We have always admired famers, those adventurous men and women who got stuff done and who put food on the table. Tractors are the big, beautiful machines that transformed back-breaking farm work into a decent living.
In 1998 J. R. Simplot attended a tractor and antique farm equipment auction in Billings, Montana at a place called Oscar’s Dreamland. The auction was billed as the largest private tractor and steam engine sale in the world with nearly 6,000 people in attendance. Over the course of three days J. R. purchased around 110 antique tractors and steam engines along with other miscellaneous antique farming equipment.
J. R. Simplot (the ‘J’ in JUMP) wanted to preserve vintage tractors and create a museum to educate others about them because it was his dream to demonstrate how important farmers and the farm industry had become despite tremendous challenges faced by farmers in terms of early equipment and techniques. To quote J. R., “My idea was to show the young people, ‘here’s how we got where we’re at; here’s the machinery we used,’ and ask them, ‘Where do you want to go from here?’ ”
When J. R. passed away in 2008, he left behind not only his legacy but also a collection of over 110 vintage tractors. While deciding what to do with these tractors, a new idea emerged. Instead of building a typical tractor museum, why not build a lively community space where the tractors can be appreciated for more than just their history. Tractors can be seen as inspiring works of human ingenuity, which have helped cultivate the world we know today and inspire the world of tomorrow. The result of that idea is the dynamic JUMP building you can visit and explore today.
The Importance of Tractors
Tractors helped transform this country’s 19th-century agricultural process into a modern, 20th-century food-producing dynamo. They replaced one man struggling behind his horse and plow with a mechanized giant that never got tired and could work as long as the driver could stay awake and had fuel to pour in the tank.
Tractors and their inventors started appearing in America at a time when westward expansion in this country was really gaining momentum. The invention of the first traction device or “tractor” as they began to be called, meant farmers had a powerful new tool that would revolutionize the farming industry. The tractors could save the farmer time and energy and help produce many times more food than ever before. And that additional food would be needed as immigrants began flocking to America in greater and greater numbers.
The first engine-powered farm tractors used steam and were introduced in 1868. As often happens, the invention of these amazing new machines led others to build their versions. Subsequent models grew in simplicity and power. Combustion engines powered the fast growing automobile industry, so it was only natural that car manufacturers became heavily involved in early tractor creation and sales.
Cheaper tractors introduced in the 1920s helped launch an agricultural revolution by allowing more farmers to afford one. The shift from animal-powered to mechanically powered farming increased productivity and made what had always been a challenging occupation more efficient. Innovations followed at a breakneck pace after the tractor’s basic machine elements had been engineered. Transmissions, pneumatic tires, hydraulic lifts, power take-off and three-point hitches made the tractor essential to running a farm.
New innovations like GPS devices, no-till farming techniques, and automated steering for tractors, make this revolutionary piece of machinery more important than ever to feeding the world. One hundred years ago, if all went well, you could plant four to five acres in a day, working from sun-up to sundown. Today’s tractors with multi-row planters can plant up to 1,500 acres per day.
Tractors, Steam Engines, Potato Diggers, oh my!
Advance-Rumely 20-40Download PDF
Advance-Rumely Ideal PullDownload PDF
Allis-Chalmers WCDownload PDF
Aultman Taylor 30-60Download PDF
1927 Rumely Model MDownload PDF
Aultman Taylor Steam EngineDownload PDF
Avery 18-36Download PDF
Avery 25-50Download PDF
Avery 40-80Download PDF
Avery Motor CultivatorDownload PDF
Avery Return FlueDownload PDF
Avery Track RunnerDownload PDF
Bear CrawlerDownload PDF
Big Bull 12-20Download PDF
Case 10-20Download PDF
Case CCDownload PDF
Case Steam EngineDownload PDF
Emerson BrantinghamDownload PDF
Farmall F-14Download PDF
Farmall F-30Download PDF
Fordson Model FDownload PDF
Frick Eclipse Steam EngineDownload PDF
Gray 22-40Download PDF
Happy Farmer Model GDownload PDF
Harrison Jumbo Steam EngineDownload PDF
Heider Model CDownload PDF
Huber Steam EngineDownload PDF
IHC 8-16Download PDF
IHC Mogul 8-16Download PDF
IHC Titian 10-20Download PDF
IHC Type ADownload PDF
Indiana 5-10Download PDF
John Deere GPDownload PDF
John Deere Model DDownload PDF
Kerosene AnnieDownload PDF
Kitten Steam EngineDownload PDF
Lion TractorDownload PDF
McCormick-Deering 5-30Download PDF
Minneapolis Steam EngineDownload PDF
Moline Universal Model CDownload PDF
Oliver Hart-Parr 18-27Download PDF
Oliver Hart-Parr 28-44Download PDF
Olmstead 15-50Download PDF
Port Huron Steam EngineDownload PDF
Reeves 40Download PDF
Russell Steam EngineDownload PDF
Square Turn 18-35Download PDF
The Ford TractorDownload PDF
Thieman TractorDownload PDF
Twin City 40-65Download PDF
Wallis CertifiedDownload PDF