Every Auction Has a Story…
Steffes Group’s blog series “Every Auction Has a Story” follows our core belief that every auction we perform is unique and has a story to be told. We are excited to share these stories with our readers and hope one day we can share yours.
We believe every auction has a story, and the Willard Onchuck Estate Collectible Toy Auction is a unique one. In 2018, Steffes Group had the honor to conduct the Triple “O” Farms & Willard Onchuck Estate Auction for Willard’s two sons which was made up of a very impressive line of farm equipment. Now, the Onchuck family is once again trusting Steffes Group to sell Willard’s extensive collection of farm toys and pedal tractors at auction. “It is both an honor and a privilege to work with the Onchuck family again. It feels good to do good things for good people!” says Dave Benedict, Steffes Group Sales Representative.
The late Willard Onchuck was a very well-known toy collector from just west of Wahpeton, ND with a collection of over 1,100 toys and pedal tractors. Whether it be a 2013 Case-IH 500 Quadtrac or a 1/16 scale Case-IH STX Quadtrac, it could be found on Willard Onchuck’s farm. Willard started to purchase toys and grow his collection between the late 1960’s and early 1970’s while he was farming and working as a Pioneer seed dealer. He built his collection through various outlets including his clientele, attending auction sales, flea markets, and toy shows in various cities around the tri-state area. “If you wanted to find a toy, you had to get up early and beat Willard to the flea market because he was always there” says Dale Krause, fellow toy collector and friend of Willard’s.
While on the hunt for new toys and pedal tractors to add to his impressive collection, Willard was often drawn to International and Case-IH models, as that was the type of equipment primarily run on the Onchuck farm. Although his forte was Arcade Cast Iron, he enjoyed rebuilding, repairing, and restoring pedal tractors and farm toys of all kinds. As with many different collectors, it can be hard to contain your collection to one designated space. Willard’s shop contained an office with multiple shelves to display assorted toys, as well as a room dedicated to rebuilding and restoring. However, with his shop not being able to contain his full collection, many toys were also on display in Willard’s house.
No tractor too big, no toy too small, Willard Onchuck had them all. Willard did not become a toy collector for the money. His infectious smile, attitude, and friendly demeanor unveiled the true joy collecting toys and pedal tractors brought him. Steffes Group is excited to be part of another chapter of the Willard Onchuck family story.
Every auction has a story, let us share yours.
The Willard Onchuck Estate Collectible Toy Auction will consist of three different auction rings opening February 19th and closing February 23rd, beginning at 10am. For more information on this auction, contact Dave Benedict at Steffes Group at 701.238.5062 and watch for a complete listing and photos coming soon at https://steffesgroup.com/Auction/AuctionDetails?Name=willard-onchuck-estate-collectible-toy-auctio-33117.