It’s well known that America was hardly ready for a global conflict when one crash-landed on its lap on Dec. 7, 1941. Our nation had to gear up, and fast, for a war that would spread across oceans and continents. That included building trucks.
Dodge responded with the WC, a series of half- and three-quarter-ton trucks that saw service in every theater of World War II. Through August 1945, Dodge built more than 250,000 of the olive-drab haulers.
Then, that war ended, Dodge retooled again and created an even better machine. In 1951, it rolled out the M37. It was based closely on its World War II predecessor. Powered by an inline 6 engine that produced less than 80 horsepower, the trucks were our military’s wheels of choice.
Dodge produced the M37 through 1968. Not long after, the government began auctioning the retired vehicles – WCs and M37s — to fire departments, lumber companies and other businesses that needed mechanized oomph. Some are still running. But not these two. What conflicts did they see?
Mattawan, Mich., 750 miles north of Atlanta.
(Photos by Roving Junkyard Correspondent Marva Brackett Godin)