During the 1950s and 1960s Paul Zimmerer, working in his auto and farm equipment repair shop in Lindsay, Nebraska, invented a series of irrigation products that changed the landscape of Nebraska agriculture. One was the tractor-towed “Towline” that allowed farmers to move a connected-pipeline irrigation system from field to field. It featured Zimmerer’s patented flexible leak-proof coupler known as the “Quick-Tach.”
In 1968 Zimmerer, with sons Art and Bernie, developed one of the first electric center-pivot irrigators, the “Zimmatic.” Its unique “Uni-Knuckle” joint enabled the system to irrigate rough terrain. The original water-driven pivots were capable of irrigating only relatively flat fields. The Zimmatic also used an external collector ring to transfer electrical power throughout the system. These developments and the establishment of a manufacturing plant on Paul’s farm just east of town made Lindsay an industry leader and major supplier of irrigation equipment throughout the U.S. and worldwide.
The Zimmerers’ entrepreneurship and innovation advanced irrigation technology tremendously, greatly benefiting the town of Lindsay, the surrounding rural community, the state of Nebraska, and the world.