Special Delivery: 1940 White Horse Van

This fascinating bread box once delivered actual bread, and then had a spot in a museum, but it’s now available here on craigslist in North Carolina and looking to be saved from the scrap heap! It’s a 1940 model, made by White Motor Company. Reader MattL sent this one in, and if your curiosity is piqued, keep reading to see more about it!

The White Motor Company has a rather interesting history, and was an offshoot of the White Sewing Machine Company around the turn of the 2oth century. Over more than 100 years, the White companies produced such things as sewing machines, lathes, roller skates, bicycles, steam and gasoline cars, trucks, buses, large diesel generators, and did related services for all of the above. Some of their products and brand lines are still in production today, although some now have different names. The bread van presented to you here was part of its commercial-vehicle-focused automotive production after the First War. To make a long story short, White made a whole lot of different things, for a lot of different uses, and it’s worth the time to read up on them a bit more.

So, we look now at the rolling red box before our eyes. The seller doesn’t give us a whole lot to go on, so we just have to look at the pictures. We are told that it was at one time part of a private museum, and that it is powered by a Franklin aircraft engine. We can surmise that it needs at least some of everything to get back on the road, but it’s mostly all there. If the seller is correct in their assertion that not many are left in the world, it could potentially be worth the trouble in the long run!

To be honest, I’m not a commercial-vehicle person. I can, however, appreciate what this is, what it was, and what it could become…and what could happen if it is left to rot any further. Were I a rich man, I would seriously consider having this one fixed up and put on display!

That’s my two cents, what’s yours? Let us know in the comments!


Like This? Get Our Daily Email


  1. alphasud Member

    I would have to name this one Mr. Ed as the front view looks like a horse.

    • Bluetec320 Bluetec320 Member

      Lol…The name of the truck is “White Horse”

  2. bobhess bobhess Member

    The drink cups on the floor is a nice touch.

  3. Kenneth Carney

    Would make a great delivery van for Grub
    Hub, Door Dash, or Bite Squad. Or one
    hell of a taco truck! I could just see my
    SIL and I using it for deliveries just the way the folks at White intended. Slide
    in a 300 cube Ford six and an automatic
    tranny, tidy up the rest of it, and call it done. Of course ya’ gotta have some A/C
    and tunes too!

    • Francisco

      You drive with the doors open. No need for AC.

      • moosie moosie Member

        You could do something like this for A/C.

    • Ramon

      Where you going to put that Ford engine? LoL. This has a mid engine flat air cooled motor….

    • Jim

      Won’t be sliding any conventional engine in one of these. These were similar to a VW Beetle with an air cooled rear mounted flat 4.

  4. Johnmloghry Johnmloghry Member

    Love the gauges with the white horse name and picture. It’s worth saving just for that. Used to see similar bread and milk delivery trucks back in the fifties. Can’t say I remember the makes and models but I always thought they were cool. Don’t want to change those tires, or wheels but you can’t really justify tossing them either. They are an important part of the originality of this vehicle. It should be carefully disassembled cleaned, repaired and reassembled to factory specks and displayed for all to enjoy. Please someone who has the means save this piece of history.
    God bless America

    • 370zpp

      One of the coolest speedos/odo/oil pressure/fuel gauges I have ever seen.

      Totally agree with Johnmloghry. Save this and display it.

  5. chrlsful

    accordian doors ta boot!

    Fella here drives one (the way KC sez 4 a DL) all over the dunes of Cape Cod. Some 1 put a divorced case transfer in it B4 he got it. Just airs down and that big pig scoots over the sand w/4WD. “The Yeloe Sumbarine”

    • Tracy

      Just looked at the link you posted. I think his truck is a Boyertown Body Works.

    • Jim

      Completely different, but I guess you can say it’s the same thing?

  6. healeydays

    It would be interesting to know more about the Franklin aircraft engine that it has in it. That was the company Tucker bought to put an engine in his car, but that was 7 years later after the war. Depending on the model engine and the condition of it and the spares, the 2 spares could help fund your project.

  7. Kenneth Carney

    Hi Francisco! Here in sunny Florida, you
    need A/C. The other day, it was 90 degrees with a heat index of 110. Suffice
    it to say, every car you see here has some
    sort of A/C in it. Either that, or you hole up in your house in the heat of the day.

    • Francisco

      You ever hear of a swamp cooler, Ken? We had one in our house trailer in south Texas in the ’60’s. I think there’s room for one in this van :-)

      • Bill McCoskey


        A swamp cooler won’t work in Miami or any tropical area because that area is already a swamp. Swamp coolers only work in very dry climates.

  8. PeterfromOz

    Note it has coil springs on the front also. Rare for a commercial vehicle of the era I would think.

    • 38ChevyCoupeGuy

      Peter from oz— With the mid engine,and only so many loaves of bread will fit, my guess is why the coils were designed in the front. Just a guess,I’ve never driven one to know how it handles , but it looks like it would be fun!😁

    • OldWhiteMan

      Coils in the rear only, the front axle uses leaf springs.

  9. Neil Sugermeyer

    There is another restored White Horse van located in the car museum in Norwich, NY.

  10. TimM

    Cool as heck!!! I see the potential for a food truck as well!!!

  11. Kenn

    And why not continue with the aircraft engine?

  12. 38ChevyCoupeGuy

    Way to cool, but one thing has me very curious… Who is trying to save it from the scrap pile? The seller? I’m only 3half hours north of its location,I’ve got many junk cars ready to go, fuel sucking rollbacks,and I’m willing travel if they are getting anything close to 14 grand for a junk car,hell I’d go for 1400……My apologies guys,I had to. Now,someone please save this way cool bread truck who isn’t loafing around 😁

  13. Johnmloghry Johnmloghry Member

    With a bread truck you can make a lot of dough just loafing around.😀
    God bless America

    • Bluetec320 Bluetec320 Member

      You’re absolutely right, that is why the sale of bread vans are on the rise. Unfortunately, they are not selling for crumbs either….

  14. Stevieg Member

    Harley hauler!

Leave A Comment

RULES: No profanity, politics, or personal attacks. Don't post your car for sale in the comments. Click here to get it featured on the homepage instead.


Notify me of new comments via email. Or subscribe without commenting.