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Le Roi Crawler Tractor

Le Roi Crawler Tractor
My Brother and I went to Belgium to visit a known dealer in old tractors, we were very surprised when we saw several barns with in the region of 200/250 old (very old) tractors, steamers and stationary engines. Amongst this vast collection, we spotted a small crawler tractor, we are in the processof restoring an old BRISTOL 22 crawler, so this small crawler caught our eye, with a name like Le Roi, we both at first assumed it to be French, especially as we were in Belgium. After some negotiations and a couple of visits, we agreed a price and took our trailer over to pick it up. We enquired about the history of it, the dealer said that he had purchased it from another dealer in France, who had seen it in a vineyard in France, the Farmer said that it had been bought from an ex Military auction and had been used in the vineyard since the Second World War, he had been told that it had been manufactured for the US Military for the D Day landings. Our dealer said that he had been in the business for over 30 years, he travels around the World buying old tractors, steamers & stationary engines. This is the only Le Roi Crawler that he has ever seen. Last year we took the Le Roi to a rally nearly every week during the summer, we have contacted a number of Military Museums in the US and UK, contacted a number of authors on tractors, had articles in a number of magazines - UK and international and from all of this, we have only met one person at one of the rallies, ex British Military, who said they had three attached to their unit in France. The crawler has Le Roi on the front and both sides of the bonnet, Le Roi plate on the engine, Le Roi name plate on the instrument panel but it also has a TOBIAS Company of Oakland California, USA plate, partially in French, you can see that the original plate has been removed and this Tobias plate has been fitted. PLEASE HELP - is there anybody out there that knows ANYTHING about this crawler - ex Le Roi - Centaur -Tobias employee ? Geoff and Tony Morson

Geoff Morson, from UK, entered 2001-04-20

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