1937 White Model 706 Yellowstone Park Bus

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The White Motor Company traces its history back to 1898, when Thomas White found himself disappointed with his new Locomobile steam car. His son Rollin developed and then patented a new form of steam generator to solve the problem, and by 1900 he had set up shop in a corner of one of his father's sewing machine factories to manufacture his own automobile.

The White company prospered, but perhaps wisely, they chose to exit car production after World War I and focus on trucks. Over the years, White accumulated a number of other truck manufacturers, such as Sterling, Autocar, and REO, and continued to hold onto a substantial portion of the American market for trucks.

White held on until 1980, when their United States assets were acquired by Volvo, although the White name remained in use in one form or another until the mid 1990s.

This bus will be sold by Mecum Auctions in Monterey, California on August 18-20, 2016, right before the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance on August 21.

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(from Mecum Auctions Press Release)

  • One of 98 White Model 706 Park Buses put into service between 1936-1938
  • No. 427
  • Ground-up restoration to like original specs
  • Retired in the mid 1960s
  • Type 20 318 CI 6-cylinder engine
  • 4-speed manual transmission
  • Two-tone Yellow and Black paint
  • Tan interior with four rows of seating
  • Seating for 14 passengers
  • Blanket chest storage compartment

The history of Yellowstone Park is remarkably faceted with tales in various areas, not the least of which is transportation. From hiking to pack mule to stage coach to busses, the transportation story of Yellowstone is truly one for the books with accounts of private companies and individuals vying for the contracts to ferry people around the park, many merging and going out of business in the process. The Yellowstone Park and Transportation Company was the most successful, backed by partners and eventually the railroad and headed up by Harry Childs. White was largely the exclusive provider of motor vehicles for the park in the earliest days, segueing with the stagecoach times with open-sided, multi-person carriers. The railroads helped finance a lot of the purchases of these vehicles, one report dating back to 1917 with a loan of $427,000 to buy busses and other assorted vehicles. The Whites proved exceptionally durable and robust, comfortable and relatively easy to drive, earning them points time and again to sell more vehicles. A fire destroying most of the Yellowstone Park Transportation Company vehicles in 1925 put White to the test, with the owner of the company, Harry Childs, contacting White and negotiating a deal for about 90 new buses and vehicles to meet the demands of the coming summer season less than three months away. White put all their efforts forth to make the business work out and delivered on time. These vehicles largely served the Yellowstone Park Transportation Company until 1936 when the White 706 was introduced. This 1937 White Model 706 was one of 98 put into service at the park between 1936 and 1938 and is noted as being vehicle No. 427. Having undergone a ground-up restoration to like original specifications, it’s a fabulously unique vehicle that helped continue popularity for one of America’s most important parks. Retired in the mid-1960s, it has the later, more powerful, smoother and more vigorous Type 20 318 CI inline 6-cylinder engine and a 4-speed manual transmission. Painted in proper two-tone Yellowstone Park Transportation Company livery, the interior is tan and features four rows of seating for 14 people and a blanked chest storage compartment.