BURTON, Texas (AP) — An annual festival in Southeast Texas built around some iconic antique farm machinery has added significance this year as the Burton Cotton Gin marks its 100th anniversary.
Several thousand people are expected Saturday in Burton. The town of about 300 is midway between Houston and Austin.
The celebration culminates with the old 125-horsepower engine at the Burton gin getting fired up and turning out a few 500-pound bales of cotton.
The Burton gin is touted as the nation’s oldest still working at its original site and with original components.
When it began producing in 1914, it was among nearly 4,700 cotton gins in Texas. And while the state remains the nation’s biggest producer of cotton, Texas now is home to only 230 gins.
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