October 17, 1809: George Esterly was born in New York state. In 1843, Esterly settled near Janesville and took up farming. By 1844 he had invented the first successful American harvesting machine and added a mowing machine, plow, hand-rake reaper and a seeder to his list of farm inventions. Esterly started a very successful implement factory in Whitewater in 1858. He moved the business to Minneapolis in 1892 but it was ruined in a financial panic. Died June 7, 1893.