1936 INDIANA docent 002



1936 INDIANA 2 Ton

The Museum’s 1936 Indiana has probably done more to promote the trucking industry than any other vehicle in the collection.

Harry Rudolfs wrote that trucking was the number one employer of Canadian males up until recently according to the 2006 Census. He states that according to all the lore written about railroads almost nothing has been written about Trucking.

A Book written by the owner of the Indiana did much to enlighten the public about the trucking industry in BC.

“100 years on Trucking in British Columbia” by Andy Craig (Hancock House, 1977). Andy sold copies of the book from hi 1936 Indiana 2ton at various truck shows and had the inside of the truck lined with photos and had a bunk to sleep in while travelling from show to show.

Andy and his truck were the first to drive the new Coquihalla Highway in B.C. in 1986 before he passed away in 1987. Well versed to speak on the history of  trucking in BC as Andy started driving1929 with a Model TT Ford dump truck owned by his Father. Inland Motor Freight was started in 1937 with a Andy and a couple of associates to run freight from Vancouver to Penticton.

Andy stated:

“In those days we hauled everything you can imagine on the up trips; and on the down-trips we searched the country over to get contracts on ore, mercury, hides horses, cattle, pigs, wool, canned goods, kegs, empty beer bottles, and everything else that would make up a load.”

Andy explains Wayfreighting, as a means by which drivers could supplement their income. As the driver drove through the towns, he’d often be asked to deliver a suitcase or a crate to a destination along his route.“Way-freighting wasn’t much fun in the worst seasons of the year, when we were fighting miles of unploughed snow, or in the spring break slugging through gumbo. It still makes me shudder to think of those stops in deep winter, when you dropped from the heat of the cab into the shock of freezing weather, then the trip around to the tail-gate, and frozen ropes.

Andy  goes on to describe the very tough driving conditions of that era: “Washboard, slides, gumbo, and narrow twisting up and down, in and out, on rutted, rotten, dirty roads…We seldom made a trip without finding some unlucky soul who had hit a rock slide, or gone over the bank, or broken through an old bridge…Two of the worst problems for drivers were metal fatigue, where a ball socket or spindle might break; and brake failure, when you really had to look out because the load of freight was so high behind it usually rolled the truck over…Most of us had gray hair prematurely, and a nervous stomach, and the bad habit of smoking two or more packs of Millbanks a day.”

Andy also recalls how the roads were not as good as they are now. Roads were frequently blocked by rock slides and snow and often section could only allow one vehicle at a time through the narrow sections. Upon retiring from trucking Andy worked for Vancouver’s Hayes Manufacturing and after finally retiring he restored a twin of his original INDIANA.

The Indiana Truck Corporation

1898 George Harwood and Charles Barley form partnership of Marion Iron and Brass Bed company.

1910 Company creates first truck, the 1001, which is sold to O. Gordon of Gas City.

1911 Re-named to Harwood-Barley Manufacturing.

1917 Company begins production of class “B” Liberty trucks for World War I.

1920 Re-named to Indiana Truck Corporation.

1925 Currently has 14 depots nationwide.

1927 Acquired by Brockway, Co.

1932 Control of company transferred to White Corporation.

1933 Production of Indiana Trucks ends in Marion, moved to White’s Cleveland home plant.

Based in Marion, Indiana, The Indiana Truck Corporation started as a company making bedsteads before experimenting with trucks and building them from 1910 to 1933 in Marian. The company became a subsidiary of White in 1932, and called the Indiana Motors Corporation and soon moved to Cleveland, Ohio before eventually stopping production in 1939.

The first Indiana Truck built completely in house after many months of building and testing was sold to O. Gordon A furniture dealer of Gas City and was No 1001. It’s builders started out as the Marion Iron and Brass Bed Company. With the booming automotive industry in the first decade of the twentieth century, the company started to experiment with a new truck design.

The Newly named Harwood-Barley Manufacturing Company (1911) concentrated on truck production but still built bedsteads and bedsprings. In the infancy of the automotive world, many manufacturers were trying to tout there products as superior to all others and the biggest hurdle, the horse and wagon. Published in 1913, a list of “39 Reasons Why You Should Sell Indiana Trucks.” was circulated among sales agencies and the public to push the virtues of the Indiana trucks.

Number 3. Because Indiana Motor Trucks are more dependable than horses and sure in the extreme heat of summer or in the snow and ice of winter”

Number 17 Because there have been only two advances made in the delivery of merchandise, namely, from the time of oxen, then to the horse, now to the Indiana Trucks, while other systems of manufacturing, sales, and what not have entirely changed”

The booklet also pushed safety among the new breed of daredevils….the Motorists. “On an even stretch of pavement the temptation is strong to ‘get there.’ TIME is a less important factor than SAFETY, to yourself, pedestrians, and the truck” (“Know”). By 1913 the company was doing business across the country, as more and more consumers were turning to trucks.

In 1915 the “Harwood-Barley Manufacturing Company” became the “Indiana Truck Company,” By 1917 it was reorganized as Indiana Truck Corporation. Indiana Truck Corporation and went National and by 1925 it had 14 depots nationwide. With depots in Jacksonville, Tampa, Miami, West Palm Beach, Atlanta, Dallas, Chicago, St. Louis, Kansas City, Louisville, Pittsburgh, Long Island, Cambridge, and San Francisco. In 1925, the company claimed to be “one of the most successful manufacturers of high grade Motor Trucks in the country”


by 1918, Indiana Trucks built 4 models including the Model “T” 1-ton Worm Drive. The Indiana Truck catalog described it as “built rugged” It had a “heavy channel steel frame that will carry the load over the roughest roads with sureness. Motor operates silently and economically under severe conditions. The quality of this Indiana Truck safeguards your investment” (“Full Line 1918”). The  Model “D” 2-ton Worm Drive, was claimed in the catalog as “America’s Greatest Truck Value” along with the Model “L” 5-ton Worm Drive, a “Big Truck to Carry Big Loads” (“Full Line 1918”).

World War 1 caused a boom in truck manufacturing and the newly improving roads help spur the dire for vehicles of all types. Eventually the company was acquired by Brockway in 1928. The company produced 16 models of trucks in 1927 and the company was still promoting their trucks.

 A booklet published by the company in 1929 contained a list of companies, organizations, and governments who owned multiple Indiana Trucks. It also contained pictures of many of these fleets. In the back of the booklet was a page advertising the dependability of Indiana Trucks. It claimed, “20 years of successful production and service . . . Performance counts! A specialized motor truck composed of specialized units-built to fit your particular hauling problem. Balanced construction to meet the exacting demands of modern transportation. Thousands of Indiana Trucks are substantiating our claims by actual performance in every state and many foreign countries.”


The first Indiana Truck, No. 1001,


The Model “T” 1-ton Worm Drive. Indiana claimed that the
“motor operates silently and economically under sever conditions.”


The Model “D” 2-ton Worm Drive. It was deemed
“America’s Greatest Truck Value” by Indiana Truck.


The Model 115-A Road Builder. A versatile truck with a dumping body at the back


The Model 127 3-ton Cargo Chassis


The Model 111-X Road Builder.

Special thanks to the following websites for the  information needed to complie the data about Indiana Trucks



This article was written by Taposh Rudra for Barbara Pack’s AP English class and Bill Munn’s AP History Class at Marion High School.



I live in Surrey, BC Canada and am a volunteer with the museum,