overall: 128 in x 63 in x 59 in; 325.12 cm x 160.02 cm x 149.86 cm
Automobile, 1/4 Ton, 1940
Automobile, 1/4 Ton, 1940; Road; Automobile
United States: Pennsylvania
In 1940, the American Bantam Car Company of Butler, Pennsylvania constructed 62 quarter-ton, four-wheel-drive trucks. This is one of the prototypes of the famous army vehicle known as the Jeep. During World War II, when the army was looking for a vehicle to replace the motorcycle as a mechanized form of transportation, it came up with the Jeep. Willys-Overland Motors, the Ford Motor Company, and the Bantam firm produced jeeps in large numbers. According to one newspaper account, about 660,000 were made. Jeeps were incredibly important to the war effort and became for many a symbol of American ingenuity. The museum's Bantam, bearing serial number 1007, was number 7 of the 62. It was delivered to the Army on November 29, 1940, and transferred to the museum in 1944.