1935 International Harvester C35 Armored Truck

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1935 International Harvester C35 Armored Truck

Incredible Piece of American History
Meticulously Restored to Original Standards
Riveted 3/16? Boiler Plate Armor
Solid Oak Interior
FAB-3 241ci OHV Six Cylinder Engine
4-Speed Manual Gearbox
Fascinating Story as a Federal Reserve Truck

This truck was custom built for the Little Rock Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis by the John C. Dix Company of Memphis, Tennessee. It is our understanding that this was the first and only armored truck built by Dix.

his truck began service at the Little Rock Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis on April 30th, 1936, replacing a 1928 Ford, and remained in service for 11 years – through World War II. It transported money between the Federal Reserve Bank, the U.S. Post Office, the Railroad Depot and the major Little Rock banks. Two former employees were located and interviewed regarding their having driven the truck. Both gentlemen had driven this truck in the mid 1940’s. They both described going by the “Ice House” and picking up a block of ice and placing it in a wash tub in the back to help stay cool during the summer months. They explained that keeping rags in the tub to wipe their faces off helped as they rode in the back. After its tenure with the Federal Reserve Bank, the truck was replaced with a 1947 Diamond-T armored truck and was transferred to the U.S. Postal Service. The truck transported registered mail and money. It’s believed the truck was retired in the late 1950’s and sold as surplus property.

This truck re-appeared later in an article in the Arkansas Gazette newspaper, dated September 24, 1974. According to the article, Mr. Nelson Mears of Mabelvale, Arkansas purchased the truck for $300 and assumed it to be a 1928 U.S. Mail truck. In the late 1980’s, Mr. Woody Cordell, also of Mablevale, purchased the truck from Mears in hopes of restoring it. Due to ill health, Cordell was unable to do so.

The truck was obtained from Cordell in 1991 by Frank and Karen Howell. The Howell’s knew that in order to restore the truck properly, more information was needed on both the mechanics of the truck, and more importantly, the truck’s history.

The research began with the truck’s manufacturer, the John C. Dix Company of Memphis, Tennessee. According to the Memphis Commercial Appeal newspaper, June 7, 1940, the Dix Company was closing its doors after 60 years of service following a violent labor dispute, and the assets were being liquidated. An article in the Memphis Press-Scimitar newspaper, June 15, 1940, corroborated this information. Contact was then made with the Jay Tom Moore family. Moore, a former Dix employee, left the company after the construction of the C-35 was complete. Mr. Moore later went on to open a specialty shop in Memphis for armored car construction and became the largest manufacturer of armored cars in the country! Moore’s sons, Rick and Terry, were able to provide the name of Mr. Jack Colter, an elderly Memphis resident who, according to the Moore’s, actually helped Jay Tom Moore, as Dix employees, build the C-35 truck. Mr. Colter was contacted by telephone. He then told the “story” of the C-35 armored truck. He said as a Dix employee at the age of 18, he was in charge of installing the wood interior in the C-35. He also said that two gentlemen with the last names of Thompson and Fisher were in charge of the steel work on the truck while Jay Tom Moore, himself, was in charge of upholstery. Colter distinctly remembered the truck and how difficult it was to build.

The truck underwent a complete frame-off restoration in 1991, involving over 2,800 hours of labor! Later on in 2003, the truck was repainted and both the engine and transmission were rebuilt by Mr. Dick “Pappy” Vance, the International Harvester expert, of Hannibal, Missouri.

In 2005, Bruce Burrow purchased the truck from representatives of the Howell Family and restored it yet again to the condition that you see it in today.




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