New Articles Coming on Pre-Deregulation Companies

I recently received some research materials concerning trucking companies that existed before the Interstate Commerce Commission began regulating the trucking industry. As many of my readers have discovered, some number of applications for authority were declined in the earliest years between 1936 to 1940. A pen individual would have to provide proof that they were consistently operating between certain points in order to be included in what was called f”grandfather rights”. If that proof could not be provided, or if the UCC determined that there was no need for that service, then the application for operating authority would have been denied. Several examples of this are provided in another articles here of Assigned ICC numbers.

A number of companies that existed before regulatory years seemed to have vanished once ICC numbers began to be granted starting in 1936. For whatever reason, these companies ceased to exist and one of the ways to find out about them is researching in older city directions. I have presented many articles about the information found in city directories and have included employee rosters from my research. I find it interesting to discover how extensive of an operation certain trucking companies may have in a particular city. For instance, the small city of Coldwater, Michigan had a massive breakbulk terminal there and I found out about it by research of a Coldwater city directory. A Saginaw, Michigan directory from 1940 helped identify the operations of Blair Transit and Doyle Freight Lines, which later merged together in 1860 to form Great Lakes Express.

I hope my readers enjoy the information that I write about concerning the city directories I use. Any comments about those articles are welcome. Look for coming articles about the trucking industry of 1934 in El Paso, Texas soon.


3 thoughts on “New Articles Coming on Pre-Deregulation Companies

  1. I worked there in 1959-1960 ,as a steveadore, at 300 Masbeth Avenue,New York City.anybody else remember that terminal? it was a union job then,Local 1730 , INTERNATIONAL LONGSHOREMANS ASSOCIATION,Inland Terminal Workers Union whose shape up office was located at 265 West 14th Street,Room 901,New York 11 N.Y. I still have my union card ,signed by Cornelius Noonan(pres) and Thomas Gleason (sec’y). What ever happened to them??? What stories I could tell about that bunch. I’m 78 years old now.


  2. I’m glad to see someone is trying to document these companies which played major roles in the growth of American industry, the WW2 arsenal of democracy, and the post war growth of the nation.

    I grew up in Saginaw, Mi. My dad was manager of purchasing and traffic for U.S. Graphite, a division of the Wickes, Corp. I left Michigan after college in 1968, so I can’t tell you much about the various trucking companies as businesses. I do, though, have a photo of William C “Bill” Blair helping teach me to shoot the .22 I got for my tenth birthday. The Blairs had no children, so I doubt you’ll find much info about him other than official records. I believe the story was that he started with one truck. His sister helped him load, and he drove between Saginaw and Detroit. Another story that I recall involved the death of “Bill” Brown of Saginaw Transfer. I believe it was at a business Christmas party. The two men were talking when suddenly Brown suddenly said, “Bill” and slumped into Blair’s arms, dead of a heart attack.

    There were other people in the industry that I knew as family friends, but not other owners. I do believe I recall Dad saying that ”Dave” Doyle had co-signed for them when my parents bought their first house. That was probably ‘38 or so and several,years before I was born.

    I have always considered these as great men. No, they weren’t famous; but most of them started with nearly nothing and with hard work and faith that they could succeed built meaningful businesses. They were the sort of men who built our country.


  3. Contact me. I have ICC proceeding that include trucking history. I have also have a data base of most of the mergers and purchases in the LTL trucking business before 2000, Phone 405-503-0536, you can call anytime as I am retired. Don


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