The Collection

Day in and day out a select group of gentlemen comprised of old friends - each a retiree with knowledge and skill in mechanics, farming, machinery, craftsmanship, business and industrial work spanning their lifetime work on "the collection."  The antique tractors and antique cars each have a story much like the gentleman working on the treasured and vintage collection.

The photographs to the right only begin to tell the story and a visit to the annual Merrill Tractor Pull in July will spark your interest to learn more about cars, tractors and their character.  Come meet the crew they are good men even if they "argue among themselves about timing belts, motors, engine elements and cranks." The tractor catalogs help settle the different opinions...each one is right and the 100 plus motors on display are their pride and joy.


The Farm

Ron Nicklaus' father was an entrepreneur moving from California to Wisconsin and eventually starting a dairy farm in Irma.  The family farm began with just one cow and grew from there.  This move would foreshadow the way Ron responded to opportunities in life, which was, get an idea, take a chance, and work hard to make it happen.

The first idea Ron became interested in was the fertilization and growth of plants. In 1956 he bough an anhydrous ammonia truck, a tractor, and an applicator to apply fertilizer to fields. The largest amount of this fertilizer was spread on corn plants. Many of the farmers who had corn, also raised green beans.  At this time beans were being harvested by hand, as mechanical bean harvesters were just being developed.  This was cutting edge technology at the time. Ron and his parents took a chance at building this opportunity into a successful bean harvesting business. - Excerpt From Beans to Banking, 2013