Monday, September 22, 2014

Home News Riding lawn mower pioneer dead

Riding lawn mower pioneer dead

Industry News

Cecil Pond, founder of Wheel Horse Products, dies at age 87.

| January 9, 2012

SOUTH BEND, Ind. – Cecil Pond, a pioneer of the riding lawn mower and founder of Wheel Horse Products, has died at age 87.

Gary Pond of South Bend said his father died Dec. 30 in Palm City, Fla., about 10 days after suddenly falling ill and being hospitalized. Pond said it was the third time in the past year his father had been hospitalized.

Born in 1924 in South Bend, Cecil Pond went to Purdue University for a year before joining the Army during World War II. He then returned to his hometown where he and his father began making a small farm tractor out of their garage in 1946.

The company was first called Pond Tractor Co., but they changed the name to Wheel Horse Products because another family member had a company with a similar name, Gary Pond said.

They then started making a two-wheel tractor that the operator would walk behind. They later came up with the idea of making a tractor people could use to cut grass.

“He invented the riding mower because he didn’t like to mow the lawn,” his son said.

Cecil Pond changed the landscape of American lawns, according to Michael Martino Jr., who wrote a book on the company, “Straight from the Horse’s Mouth.”

“It came out after World War II when suburbs were popping up everywhere and it revolutionized the industry by bringing the riding lawn mower to suburban homes,” said Martino, a teacher in East Haven, Conn.

Demand was so high that the company had a hard time keeping pace, Martino said. The company made 22 attachments, including snow plows and plows for gardens.

Read the rest of the article here.
 



 

Top news

Door to Door Sales Today: It’s not your parents’ sales approach

This old-school sales tactic can bring new vigor to your lawn care business.

EPA settles with DuPont

The company will pay a penalty to resolve alleged violations of pesticide reporting and distribution laws.

The dangling carrot

Eric Barrett uses incentives to keep his workers motivated and his company growing.

Rebates for redesigns

To help water conservation efforts, a program is giving support for landscape conversions.

Free event at GIE+EXPO

Dixie Chopper is hosting a party for commercial contractors.

x