Sunday, August 30, 2009

Alens REO

I recently received the following e-mail along with some GREAT pics of a REO belonging to ALLEN VERMAN ----

hi there
ran across your site with the pic. of the old REO truck and thought that since you like old trucks so much i'd send a couple pictures of my '34.
i have had virtually no luck finding pictures of a truck like mine anywhere, it's a model 1B, without a bed at the moment untill i find a suitable style to use as a model.
we are wondering what this truck did for a living, the thing has lots of miles, but the secondary springs are not worn, other drive train parts show quite a bit of wear.
another truck nut
allen verman
cuba, ohio

Thanks Allen for the e-mail and the great pics --- NICE TRUCK YOU LUCKY MAN!!!

In search of WALTER

No, not the Jeff Dunham character, but great trucks known as WALTERS. My quest was to view and photograph the WALTER SNOW PLOW collection of Jerald Johnson in Lapeer, NY, just west of Marathon.

First, a little history about the WALTER


William Walter was a Swiss immigrant, and came to the U.S.A. in 1883 and established himself as a manufacturer of candy and confectionery machinery. He built himself a passenger car in 1898 and from 1904 to 1909 made high­ quality cars, at first in New York City and later at Trenton, N.J. Truck production began in 1909 a t the New York factory on West 66th Street, and in 1911 the first 4-wheel­ drive trucks appeared, which were to become the staple product of the company. Based on the French Latil and of similar appearance with radiator behind engine, they were made in sizes from 1 ½ to 7 tons. Conventional rear wheel drive and also front wheel drive trucks were also made, all with internal gear drive to the wheels. Engines were Walter's own make up to 1920, then mainly Waukesha during the 1920s. Gradually the rear-wheel-drive models were phased out, although a 15/25-ton rwd tractor with 5­speed gearbox was made as late as 1924. By the mid-1920s Walters had assumed their characteristic appearance with engine projecting ahead of the front axle; in 1929 the first Walter Snow Fighter appeared, and this was a field in which the company later became well-known, as well as for highway maintenance work and carrying cement mixers. During the 1930's Walter supplied a number of fire engines to New York City. Articulated dump trucks were used in open-cast coal mining, and Walters were also seen in the logging industry. By 1940 there were six models, all with 4-wheel-drive, of 3 to 12 tons capacity. Engines were 6-cylinder units by Waukesha, Hercules and Cummins, the latter a diesel.

During World War II Walter supplied 4 X 4 artillery tractors with 672ci 6-cylinder Hercules engines to the U.S. Army, and also snow removal trucks with Waukesha engines to both U.S. and Canadian forces. After the war the 4-wheel-drive trucks were continued, and Walter entered a new field with the building of airfield crash tend­ers. These were developed in conjunction with the Federal Government, the Port of New York Authority and the National Fire Protection Association. Current production includes crash tenders with single and twin engines, refuse collection trucks and the familiar 4-wheel-drive trucks and snowplows.


Our drive from Horseheads took about 1 1/2 hours, and I am sorry to say that upon our arrival Jerald was not present, the house across the road completely empty.
I had found out about this collection through my friends over at HANK'S where we have been discussing these brutes in a forum. Here is a taste of what I found --

This is just a small sampling of what I found. If you want to see more pictures, and read some more stuff about the WALTER, check out the post's on HANKS TRUCK PICTURE FORUM, the
WALTER THREAD --- remember to check out the previous five pages!!!