We published photos of this thermometer several weeks ago. The collectible item is courtesy the Thomas Albright collection. It was probably a gift item for customers of the Pelican Rapids Farmers Elevator.  Tom is pictured holding the thermometer, and also pictured, a close-up of the well-built metal thermometer.  

Imprinted in the metal: “Farmers Elevator Co. Grain, Feed, Seed, Coal, Pelican Rapids, Minn.” 

One of our readers phoned in about the thermometer, and how it was used.

Al Abrahamson, Brooklyn Center and seasonal Lake Lida resident, has a similar thermometer–but imprinted with “Federal Land Bank” South University Drive, Fargo.  With farm roots extending to Leo, North Dakota, Abrahamson recalls them back at least 60 years. “Farmers pushed them into grain bins to determine if the grain bins are heating up,” said Abrahamson.  “If it is too hot, you would empty it; otherwise you could lose the whole bin.”

 Warm temps and hot spots could cause molding and fermenting.  Further, overheated bins are a fire hazard.  Today, grain drying fixtures prevent most of the problems.