Scroll down for pictures and descriptions of the Christmas 1940's House
1940's Farm House
The Museum showcases a re-creation of four rooms of the 1940's farm house where Earl grew up, including the living room, kitchen, dining room, and bedroom.
1950's Massey-Harris Tractor
One of the highlights of the museum, this Model 44 - 1951 tractor was built between 1950 and 1955. It has 41.36 Drawbar H.P. and 47.04 Belt H.P. For perspective, today's consumer lawn tractors have 20-25 H.P.
The Museum is loaded with displays of old farm tools, from primitive to the 1940's era. Come visit and take a look at a glimpse of farm life from days gone by.
Toy Tractor Collection
The Schoeffner Farm Museum contains a collection of Earl's toy tractors, as well as school projects and awards from his childhood days.
Featured Museum Pieces
Did you know that rubber tires are listed as one of the top 10 agricultural inventions? Harvey Firestone, founder of The Firestone Tire & Rubber Company and Firestone retail stores, first offered rubber, air-filled tires in 1932. Since little Earl wanted them on his toy tractor, it is quite fitting they are prominantly on display on this life size John Deere farm wagon at the Momence Farm Museum!
This Albany Sleigh, built in the 19th century, was the most expensive and sporty design available. Found in a barn in Coopersville, MI, this 140 year old sleigh is in totally original condition. The upholstery pattern, gold pinstriping, and twin decorative eagle heads may still be seen. The sleigh interior is complete with a Clark #6 charcoal footwarmer and a vintage sleigh blanket.
Featured Special Exhibit
"Fishing the Kankakee...Momence Memories 1870 to 1950"
Christmas Past - the 1940's House
Opening December 1st and open each Friday and Saturday in December
Roger, the father, and two-year old Bobby are almost finished decorating the tree. As they admire their work, they realize there is one more string of lights and two more ornaments to be placed on the tree. The flickering fire, the electric train, the glowing candles and the presents by the tree all add to the happy scene. While mittens dry in the corner and songs on the piano are waiting to be played, Christmas melodies from the radio fillthe air. Cards on display bring messages of love and joy from friends and relatives. The four stockings have been hung, “by the chimney with care,” reminiscent of the famous poem,‘Twas the Night Before Christmas.
Aunt Gwendolyn has arrived from back East for a Christmas visit and has been assigned the job of wrapping all the presents. Settingher suitcases aside, she has transformed the bedroom into a gift-wrapping center. Her niece, Darlene, is happily helping her with the packages. Besides wrapping, the young girl enjoys peeking into the boxes and discovering the secrets of who gets what. It looks like a bright yellow tow truck, a doll, a woodburning set, an electric razor, woolen socks, a type-setting outfit and plaid sweater vest are among the gifts. Brightly colored Christmas boxes, some of them from Marshall Field and Company, give testimony to the extensive shopping that has been done.
In the kitchen, mother Grace and eight-year-old Mary Ann have been busy all day baking Christmas cookies using Grandma’s traditional family recipe. One batch is ready to bake while a second has just been rolled and cut into shapes of a Christmas tree, Santa with a sack of toys on his back, and a wreath. Grace holds a gingerbread man cutter, ready for the next recipe which Mary Ann will mix with her big wooden spoon! The girl likes to dip the cookie cutters into the bowl of flour so that they will not stick in the dough. She has been waiting all day to decorate and sample the warm cookies and to share them with the family.
In the dining room, oldest boy Ronnie is setting the table for the coming Christmas feast. He is looking forward to a delicious baked ham with pineapple, mashed potatoes, candied yams, cranberries and his favorite pudding for dessert. He is thinking about the gifts that he might receive like the one that was at the top of his “wish list,” a black cowboy hat to complete his Western outfit. As he works, he is glancing at the manger scene and remembering the story of the very first Christmas. Also, his attention is drawn to the center of the table where a poinsettia plant, a living symbol of Christmas, adds to the festive atmosphere of the entire house.