Thursday, July 26, 2012

Thursday Thirteen: Visiting the Reaper

The Cyrus McCormick Farm is located just outside of Steeles Tavern, VA. It's a National Historic Landmark. The facility is now owned by Virginia Tech and the historic area is adjacent to the university's Shenandoah Valley Agricultural Research and Extension Center.

Cyrus McCormick, in case you've forgotten your history, invented the reaper.

The reaper allowed farmers to increase their productivity and reduced labor costs. As far as farm machinery goes, the reaper is the granddaddy of all inventions, second only to the plow in terms of its usefulness.

This is a mill located on the McCormick property. It was used for milling grains.

This is the mill wheel. It does not take much water running through the sluice to make the wheel turn and do its work.

A sign noting that this area is a National Historic Landmark.

A second building on the site proclaims itself as the blacksmith shop where the reaper was created.

The tools that created the Virginia reaper.

This is a facsimile of the original reaper.

The case to the right holds a lot of little models of reapers.

The walls of the buildings had many newspapers, pictures, and placards of information.

This is the inside of the mill. These are the gears that work to make the grain.

More newspapers about the great invention. One of them said, "Eureka, Eureka! A boon for farmers and wives alike!"

This log indicates the time frame of the nation. It shows when the tree was just a twig in 1603 and the College of William and Mary was founded, then follows on up the years with George Washington, the American Revolution, Cyrus McCormick's birth, the reaper invention,
the Civil War, and ends with the moon landing in 1969. I thought this was neat.

A stone marking the birthplace of Cyrus McCormick.

My husband looking over the backside of the mill.

Thursday Thirteen is played by lots of people; there is a list here. I've been playing for a while and this is my 252nd time to do a list of 13 on a Thursday.


  1. oh, pooh ... you should have called me i would love to see this ... i've seen the sign on 81 ... but never stopped. looks like a great spot to check out. (:

  2. I was just planning some visits out with the kids to Staunton, Goshen Pass, and possibly the farm! Lol. It was funny to see your last few posts all relating to the very places I was researching. Happy day!

  3. "Eureka, Eureka! A boon for farmers and wives alike!" How charming! I love this stuff. Thanks for posting it.

  4. Interesting stuff, Anita! I never knew that Virginia was the birthplace of the reaper. It really was such a revolutionary invention.

    Haha...when I saw the tombstone-looking marker, I thought it was Mr. McCormick's grave, and half expected it to say something like, "Here lies Cyrus---Claimed at last by the Grim Reaper." (Sorry, a little dark humor there!) :-)

    I really love the log with the rings tracing the history of the nation---incredible! I'm really enjoying the travelogue of your vacation...thank you.

  5. And now I'm humming "Don't Fear the Reaper"

    Happy TT!

  6. Of course I thought this post was going to be about death. I didn't know about Cyrus inventing the reaper. It all looks very similar to our Mabry Mill. There is a Floyd Countian who just wrote a book about the Mills in FLoyd, should be interesting.

    I got my 13 up now. The title is Yurt so Good!

  7. oh we stopped here once. i loved it and the grounds are just beautiful too!

  8. You and your husband go on some great excursions! We mostly go to Lowe's and buy stuff.

  9. Not playing the 13s this week myself (planning a blockbuster for next week, though) but I enjoyed yours very much, even though I'm living in the middle of John Deere country.

  10. Gives you a real sense of history, doesn't it?

  11. It really is very interesting. We had one similar to that where I grew up.

    Have a great T-13!

  12. Ooo,you've been visiting some interesting places! You're braver than me for venturing forth in the heat.

  13. Ooo,you've been visiting some interesting places! You're braver than me for venturing forth in the heat.

  14. Lots of history there! I love old stone buildings.

    And yes, I did have a few moments of "What's a reaper if not the Grim Reaper?" But I caught on pretty quickly! ;)

  15. Thanks for the tour of the The Cyrus McCormick Farm, and for visiting my post yesterday. Have a great weekend!

  16. Farming reapers are very useful. Reaper cuts and gathers crops at harvest.

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I enjoy your comments and always appreciate the opportunity to visit the blogs of my readers. I hope you have a great day!