Historic piece of machinery comes home to Kingaroy
KINGAROY Heritage Museum’s Peanut Thresher has returned home after restorations began on the historic piece of machinery earlier this year.
Housed in what was the town’s power house from 1925 to 1952 - and now part of the Kingaroy Information, Art and Heritage Precinct - the Peanut Thresher is the museums leading attraction.
The thresher was built by local peanut farmer George Stolzenberg who used the thresher on his own farm, as well as helping out neighbouring farms during the rise of Australia’s peanut capital.
Mr Stolzenberg’s family donated the thresher to the Kingaroy Heritage Museum shortly after the Kingaroy Information Art and Heritage Precinct opened its door in 2005.
The Stolzenberg thresher is part a large collection of peanut machinery that is on display at the Kingaroy Heritage Museum, along with the history of peanut farming in the South Burnett.
The history of the local peanut industry is a main focus of the collection, with exhibits of agricultural machinery showing the ingenuity and inventiveness of the local farmers and tradespeople at the time.
Machinery for farming peanuts was not available in the early 1920s, so farmers invented their own. The first being a bicycle powered thresher built in 1909, followed by an American-made wheat thresher, which was converted by a local farmer to thresh peanuts.
In the late 1920s, Harry Young invented the museums ‘dinosaur’ - a stationary peanut thresher.
These machines are on display in the museum along with other prototypes of peanut harvesting machinery designed and built by local inventors. Some of their ideas are still in use today.
The peanut thresher has spent the last six months at South Burnett Woodcrafters located in King St, Kingaroy,
The restoration was funded through Council’s 2019-20 Operational Budget.