1920 Samson Trucks: Pick One Or Both!

Samson Trucks

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Samson built tractors for a number of years, but trucks were only produced for a short time under GM ownership, from 1920 to 1923. GM bought the company in 1918 to have a tractor to compete with Ford’s Fordsom tractors. GM shut down Samson in 1923 when that failed. Some of these trucks were still being used in the 1940s. These two trucks are listed here on eBay and here in Sturgis, South Dakota. They are reportedly being sold by Samson Exhaust, “The Godfather of Pipes”. As rare as these are, and this fellow has two, do you think collecting the trucks had anything to do with the name of the company? Bidding has been active but it’s at only at $2,600 on one and $2,025 on the other and have not met reserve. Thanks to Peter R for the tip on these unique old trucks.

right front sam

These trucks were built for farm use. The engine is a 26 horsepower Chevy. It looks like someone found a use for one at some point hauling tourists. The red one looks to be in better condition, the green one more original. There is no word on the mechanical condition, but they might be in good order. Perhaps these trucks will have a future in a museum or a promotional venture? You can start your own Samson truck collection and possibly have the largest collection around!

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  1. JW

    Strange trucks for sure. IMO they have no practical value except as automotive museum pieces. They should be saved but only for historical purposes.

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  2. wayne

    I actually work with a co worker who inherited one of these trucks .. almost identical. .a 23 Samson ..with open cab and wooden bed .. it’s located in Floyd co VA .. and was used in a movie recently “wish you well “

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  3. 1969Deuce

    When I was a kid in Jr HS, I got the chance to attend the yearly show at Swigart Museum in Huntington, PA for several summers. There were occasional Samsons that showed up. They were just wonderful pieces. I love these 2. I’d probably try to think of a creative way to replace the plywood to something more original.

    If I only had a huge barn for all the stuff I’d love to have . . .

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  4. HoA Howard AMember

    Sampson has Wisconsin roots. The now defunct GM plant in Janesville,Wis. was originally the Sampson Tractor plant and also made the trucks later. One of the reasons the plant was de-commissioned was because much of the outdated plant was from the Sampson era. When they closed the plant in 2009, it left a huge hole in Janesville’s economy. These definitely should be at the Wisconsin Auto Museum in Hartford, Wis. ( a must see for car nuts if you are in SE. Wis) that specializes in Wis. made vehicles. You truck drivers out there, think your truck is a little rough, look what these drivers drove. Pretty incredible find.

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    • leiniedude leiniedudeMember

      I was born in Janesville and grew up hearing the Sampson Tractor stories. When I go back to town I drive by the dead plant, so sad. I was in the plant many time as a contractor, I did have many friends that did work for the General. A ton of crazy stuff going on down there. It could be why the only GM in my garage was built in St. Lou.

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  5. David Frank DavidAuthor

    (Samson, by the way, not SamPson) They started in Stockton, CA. in 1900 building tractors. GM moved them to Janesfield in 1919 after they bought Janesville Machine Company in 1918. Here’s a 1912 Samson Tractor.

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  6. geomechs geomechsMember

    I heard of Samson/GM tractors but never saw one in the flesh until about 8 years ago. Here’s a photo of the same tractor when I was at a show last summer. Having a little trouble I see…

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  7. Ron

    Does anyone know where the serial number is located on a 1923 Samson truck?

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    • kurtis b kocher

      Dis you ever find a serial number? How about replacement tire?

      Like 0

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