York Town Square

Part of the USAToday Network

Is this a York County farm truck or is it just a wagon with a motor?

Ruth Myers, left, and Ruby Myers, right, twin 5-year-old Thomasville-area sisters sit in a Chase quarter ton pickup truck 1948. At that time, the truck was 50 years old. This photo was published in The (York, Pa.) Gazette and Daily in June 1948. Background posts: Codorus collector exhibits collection of conveyances – wheels and sleighs and Can York’s longtime claim as ‘Detroit of the East’ be proven? and Hart-Krafts of York, Pa.: ‘Most of the trucks were used and abused’.

The photo from 51 years ago shows a truck of 50-year-old vintage. Or is it a just a farm wagon with an engine jury-rigged on it?
Well, early automobiles evolved from wagons and that explains why York County had so many automakers in the first 20 years of the 20th century. As a region with many major roads going back to its earliest years, York County played host to hordes of travelers and, thus, had many wagon makers.
The photo caption told the news of E.A. Krug’s purchase of the quarter-ton pickup truck… .

Krug was a Hanover antique dealer and paid $87 for the vehicle at a public sale at the property of Luther I. Lau, Spring Grove RD1.
Information with the photo indicated that the truck was equipped with a three-cylinder, two-cycle, air-cooled motor. Malfunctioning bearings had kept it off the road – or farm lanes – for 20 years.
“Lau said he was told by the previous owner that the Chase is able to obtain a speed of 20 miles per hour and will do about 10 miles on a gallon of gasoline,” the newspaper reported. “The vehicle has a spring wagon body and hard rubber tires.”
Wonder if today – 50 years later still – some part of that truck is sitting in a farm shed somewhere in York County’s hinterlands?