No. 147: Hauler Of All

Someone got it this far. Then, nature did what it always does: Its green tendrils reached out. With leaf and limb, it drew the machine close. Peeking from all this foliage is a first-edition Dodge D100 pickup. The D100 marked a styling departure from the mid-‘50s Job Rated machines – wider, not as tall, aContinue reading “No. 147: Hauler Of All”

No. 145: Dodge Goes to War

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-tonContinue reading “No. 145: Dodge Goes to War”

No. 144: The Loadmaster

It was running when I parked it, No. 144: The Loadmaster. This old hoss carried melons from the farms of south Georgia to the freight yards of Atlanta. It trundled bundles of bright leaf to warehouses in Greenville and Rocky Mount. It carried pumpkins from central Michigan to trucking terminals in Kalamazoo. It took hardhattedContinue reading “No. 144: The Loadmaster”

No. 136: Something New!

It was time. As the end of the decade neared, Chevrolet’s tough-ass line of pickups, the 3100, had grown old. In 1959, Chevy introduced the C and K series of trucks. Owners reported it rode as much like a car as a truck. “C” meant light-duty, rear-wheel drive. The “K” designation meant four-wheel drive. IfContinue reading “No. 136: Something New!”

No. 135: A Little Paint and a Lot of Prayer

It’s easy to overuse “iconic” when discussing American steel, but if it fits, use it. And the word certainly fits here. Ford Motor Co. held on to prewar car and truck designs in its hurry to answer pent-up public demand for any kind of transportation following World War II. But even as plants in DearbornContinue reading “No. 135: A Little Paint and a Lot of Prayer”

No. 132: Go, Devil?

This quarter-ton hauler was built in Toledo, Ohio. The earliest it could have left the Jeep assembly line at the Kaiser Willys plant would have been 1946, when American manufacturers hustled to make vehicles for the civilian market. That year, Willys produced a Jeep that was a lot like the model that became famous inContinue reading “No. 132: Go, Devil?”

No. 129: Angling for a New Life

The Model T was a hit in Great Britain. The public snatched up the cars just as avidly as their cousins across the pond. But when the Model A debuted, in 1928, Brits didn’t get as excited. That led, ultimately, to Ford Motor Company’s decision to create a new line of cars for the BritishContinue reading “No. 129: Angling for a New Life”

No. 124: Along the Mother Road

Steinbeck called it ”the road of flight.” Desperate people, “refugees from dust and shrinking land,” found the highway and headed west. Folks still do. After negotiating a herd or burros, travelers may come across a 1952 3/4-ton Chevrolet pickup*, its metal dulled by the sun and the dust, by the relentless tramp of time alongContinue reading “No. 124: Along the Mother Road”

No. 123: The Surprise Around the Next Curve

A 1954 Chevrolet half-ton, a proud representative of the 3100 series of trucks,* thrusts an inquisitive nose into the fall air on a Georgia highway just beyond Atlanta’s outer ‘burbs. Harbins, 33 miles northeast of Atlanta. (Photo by Junkyard Correspondent Intern Sam Davis) *The Greatest Pickup Of All Time