Antique tractor auction to benefit Powdersville YMCA
Powdersville businessman Steve Crowe and Easley, Pickens and Powdersville YMCA President Sid Collins didn’t know what to expect when they were called to a meeting with longtime Piedmont community leader Jimmy Wilson. But when the meeting was over, the Y was the proud new owner of an antique tractor collection considered to be one of the best in the country.
“Jimmy gave me a call and asked me to get Sid and come visit. We chatted for a while then all of a sudden Jimmy said, ‘I’ve got something on my mind that I want to do. I want to give my tractor collection to the Y,’” recalled Crowe, owner of Foothills Motorsports in Powdersville and a longtime YMCA advocate. “I knew what the tractor collection was because I had seen it many times. It was quite a shock to be honest.”
Valued at more than $500,000, Wilson’s collection includes a Hart Parr 30, an IHC 8-16 Junior Kerosene, an International Harvester Titan 10- 20, a Case 18-32, more than 50 John Deere tractors and several other unique brands. The tractors, some of which date back to 1919, have been restored to their original working condition.
“You get different gifts from time to time, but this is definitely one of a kind and just an amazing testament to Mr. WIlson,” said Leebo Keels, branch executive of the Powdersville YMCA.
The YMCA, in partnership with Aumann Auctions of Illinois, will host an auction of the The Jimmy Wilson Collection on Sat., Oct. 9, beginning at 10 a.m., with a preview event scheduled on Fri., Oct. 8, from 2 p.m. until 7 p.m. Proceeds from the auction will help fund a future Child Development and Training Center in the Powdersville and Wren communities.
For Wilson, a lifelong resident of Piedmont who spent 25 years acquiring the vintage tractors, the donation will ensure that proceeds from the sale of his collection will stay in the local community.
“I knew at some point in time the collection would be sold, and the Y is probably one of the best things that has ever happened to our community,” Wilson said. “It serves Piedmont and Powdersville and anybody can go. I just wanted the money to stay in the area, and really that’s kind of where the Lord led me to leave it.”
The public is invited to attend the Oct. 9 auction at 300 Shiloh Road in Piedmont, SC. Bidding has already begun online, with online and in-person bidding taking place at the event, according to Crowe.
“Most of the time at an auction like this, 60 to 70 percent of the buying will probably be done over the internet, but we’re expecting several hundred people to be here at the auction,” Crowe said. ”We will have people here from all over the country and a lot of these tractors will probably go out of the country because there is a lot of international interest in antique tractors.”
YMCA officials say that auction proceeds will begin the effort to make the Powdersville Child Development and Training Center a reality. Construction costs are estimated at $1.5 million to $2 million, however a location has not been identified.
The center will offer primary childcare for infants through 4K, help train family caregivers in the community who are serving as primary caregivers, and provide support services to expecting and new mothers.
“It’s just so unbelievable and amazing that (Mr. Wilson’s) generosity and passion for this community is now benefiting the Y,” Keels said. “He cares a lot about the Y, but he cares more about this community and it’s amazing that he wants these funds to stay in the community.”
Go HERE to view the Jimmy Wilson Collection benefiting the YMCA of Powdersville.
Want to attend?
What: The Jimmy Wilson Collection Benefiting the YMCA of Powdersville
When: Sat., Oct. 9, 10 a.m.; Preview Event on Fri., Oct. 8, 2 p.m. – 7 p.m.
Where: 300 Shiloh Road, Piedmont SC 29673
For more information on the YMCA of Easley, Pickens and Powdersville, go HERE.