"The Johnny Popper" is the Monthly Newsletter of the Michiana Two-Cylinder Club. Here is an article from their October 2005 newsletter:
"On Saturday night, August 20, the Two-Cylinder Barn at the Berrien Co. Youth Fair was overflowing with people hoping to hear a familiar name called out when Bob G. reached into the barrel of 675 entries. And the winner is - two-year-old Joshua J.!
John Deere tractors and implements have been running in the J* family for many years. Joshua's great-great grandfather Faye J. and brother Floyd operated the first John Deere dealership in Kalkaska County, Michigan in the early 1920's.
Back then, there were still lots of Michigan fields to be cleared of trees and it was a long and difficult job to get a field ready for the first planting. Knowing how their Dad felt, Faye and Floyd went behind their father's back and purchased a John Deere tractor to help clear stumps from the field.
When their Dad discovered they had bought a tractor, he challenged them by stating that his team of horses (he was known across the country for owning several of the best draft horse teams in the nation) could pull more stumps in a day than they could with their "newfangled" tractor. After only a few hours in the field competing with his sons, he left the field convinced the John Deere tractor was a useful piece of equipment. He then allowed his sons, Faye and Floyd, to open up the dealership which was called the J* Brothers' Johne Deere Implements and Farm Supplies. The dealership was in operation until the late 1950's.
Obviously, the family still has a keen appreciation for John Deere tractors and equipment. When Joshua's name was called out on August 20, Grandma J was at the barn ready and waiting to take the J.D.Gator to Joshua.
This was the first time the Michiana Two-Cylinder Club had a drawing for a large John Deere toy. We are pleased that it was given to a child that has such a strong legacy with John Deere and Company."