Truck history magazines, museums and clubs

June 10, 2011  | by: Max Heine

The nation’s antique truck clubs, magazines and museums are a great resource for exploring trucking history.

Old Time Trucks magazine is dedicated to the classic truck hobby and the glory days of trucking. It features stories about old trucks and the people who drove them, then and now. Every issue is filled with photos of antique trucks, rusty or restored, many of which are sent in by readers. Stories include drivers’ tales of their adventures out on the road, truck restorations, company histories, and technical articles about various engines or components. Old Time Trucks magazine focuses primarily on heavy duty, over-the-road, classic trucks made in North America. But we include fire trucks, off-highway classic trucks, light duty antique trucks, antique military vehicles, and classic trucks manufactured outside North America. Feed your old truck fever and share the fun with other classic truck enthusiasts.

The Hays Antique Truck Museum contains one of the largest collections of antique trucks in the United States. The museum was established in 1982 by A.W. Hays, a pioneer and leading figure in the California trucking industry. Retired after 50 years in trucking, Hays began to collect and restore the old trucks now at the museum.

The collection includes over 100 different makes of trucks, representing 94 different manufacturers, including as Fageol, Freightliner, Mack, Sterling, Oshkosh, Peterbilt, and the one and only 1916 Breeding steam truck. Also on display are trailers, industrial powerplants, tools, equipment and trucking memorabilia.


The American Truck Historical Society was formed to preserve the history of trucking and its pioneers.

Originally headquartered in Dearborn Heights, Mich., the ATHS headquarters is located in Kansas City, Mo. Its facility include the Zoe James Memorial Library and White Archives.

ATHS has over 21,000 members in the United States, Australia, Canada, and 20 other countries.


The Pacific Northwest Truck Museum contains some of the working vehicles that developed the Pacific Northwest. These restored antique trucks, parts and memorabilia also show the technical innovations brought about by the region’s longer distances and rough terrain.

The museum has more than 75 trucks, including old brands such as Autocar, Moreland, Samson, White and Yellow-Knight.


The Mack Trucks Historical Museum contains documents and artifacts from Mack’s long history. The museum has more than 80,000 photos, many dating to 1905. Records include documentation of almost all trucks ever made by Mack.

Vehicles on display include one of the original sightseeing buses built by Jack and Augustus Mack in the first decade of the twentieth century. The gas-operated, open-air bus carried up to 26 tourists at a time around the streets of Chicago in the summer and New Orleans in the winter. Also in the collection is a 1911 Mack Jr., which shared the streets with horse-drawn wagons as it delivered dry goods and produce.

The museum has a partnership with the America on Wheels Transportation Museum in Allentown, Pa. This attraction tells the story of the nation’s over-the-road transportation,  with a strong emphasis on the history of Mack Trucks.


The America on Wheels Transportation Museum in Allentown, Pa., features the vehicles that put our nation on the road to international leadership in automotive transportation and trucking.

It includes an exhibit on alternative fuels, changing vehicle exhibits, a theater, a gift shop, a library, and a special event room that is available for meetings and receptions.

The early days of trucking come alive through the exhibit at the C. Grier Beam Truck Museum. It contains vintage trucking memorabilia from the last seven decades.

The museum was founded in 1982 by Carolina Freight Carriers Corp. as part of its 50th anniversary celebration.


The International Towing & Recovery Hall of Fame and Museum contains restored antique wreckers and equipment, industry-related displays of collectible toys, tools, unique equipment, and pictorial histories of manufacturers. The ever-changing collection of tow trucks dates from the earliest days of the automobile.

Chattanooga, Tenn., was chosen as the museum’s home because the industry’s first wrecker was fabricated there at the Ernest Holmes Co.


The Antique Truck Club of America, based in Boyertown, Pa., represents people interested in restoring and preserving old trucks. The group maintains a library of materials on antique commercial vehicles.

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