5-6 October 2017

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Lot 183

1950 Ferguson TO-20 Tractor

  • Chassis no. 118972

Sold for $4,950

Please note that this lot is offered on a Bill of Sale.

  • Known ownership history from new
  • Nut-and-bolt restoration to original in 2007
  • When new, used along the legendary Route 66

In late-1938, Harry Ferguson demonstrated one of his tractors to Henry Ford. The duo entered into a “handshake agreement” and Ford began producing the Ford 9N tractor in 1939, essentially a Ferguson design. Following WWII, Ford reneged on the agreement, Ferguson sued, and Ford was forced to pay Ferguson one of the largest settlements in Ford history to date. Ferguson set about expanding his business in Europe and in the early 1950s, merged with Massey Harris of Canada to become Massey Ferguson.

The TO-20 tractor was produced in Detroit, Michigan, from 1948–1951 and is powered by a 20.7-hp 120-cu. in. Continental Z-120 inline four-cylinder gasoline engine. Transmission is a constant mesh four-speed with reverse. This example was originally purchased by the New Mexico Highway Department to cut grass along the famous Route 66 from Gallup, New Mexico, to the Arizona border. It was taken out of service in the 1970s and stored by the Highway Department until it was sold in the 1980s.

The tractor was purchased at a 2006 estate sale by Phil Jones, a Tucson, Arizona, Ford and Massey Ferguson tractor restorer. Jones was commissioned by the Tallahassee, Florida, Auto Museum to do a nut-and-bolt restoration (along with seven other Ford and M-F tractors) as part of a public display at the Museum. The tractors were completed in 2007, but the Museum lost its funding and the tractor display was cut short. The tractors, including this example, were sold in 2009.

The tractor has been in a private collection and never used or shown while in the consignor’s collection. Included in the sale are the operation and maintenance manuals, vintage ad, and period New Mexico road maps.


Please note that this tractor is a Ferguson model from prior to the Massey Ferguson merger.

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver


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Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat


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Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

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Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

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David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

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Gord Duff


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Michael Squire


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Mike Fairbairn


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As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

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Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden


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Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more