When The Rubber Didn’t Hit The Road!

Dad on tractor14. Mom 1945

I love these two photo’s of my Mom and Dad. I think these pictures were taken early spring 1945.

Dad is posing proudly on his, FARMALL tractor and mom isn’t letting him  have all the fun. They hadn’t been married all that long, and mom was being introduced to farm life in Iowa. My, “Corn Rose,” looks happy in this picture, but tougher times were ahead.

Young love conquers all!

When I took a closer look at these photo’s one day, I realized something unusual. Can you tell what’s different in each shot? Something’s missing!

Well, if you look closer you’ll see there isn’t any rubber tires on the tractor. Why?  You ask.

I’m guessing, it was because there was still a shortage of rubber from the rationing that went on during the war years. WWll, that is!

I found this article on the internet which describes rationing during the war. I wonder if we could deal with those kind of sacrifices today?http://www.sarahsundin.com/make-it-do-tire-rationing-in-world-war-ii/

It seems those crafty Japanese had taken over the main were rubber producing countries of Malaya, and the Dutch East Indies.  These rubber plantations provided the raw material needed to make tires and other rubber products the U.S. so desperately need.

At home, in the states, everyone was encouraged to conserve on everything from flour, coffee, and rubber.

7. Dad's War Ration Book

Dad’s War Ration Book


So it makes sense that dad’s tractor was without rubber tires. I’m sure the ride was not a comfortable one. A far cry from the air-conditioned cabs farmers enjoy today.  The most luxury that I can remember my dad enhancing his tractor with, was an umbrella to keep the sun off his head.

My Dad farmed with FARMALL and INTERNATIONAL machinery his whole life. I loved driving those old tractors. I felt on top of the world when I put it in gear and took off. Mostly because he trusted me to do so!


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