Wondering about wild grapes

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Wondering about the Jeep

I was born in Butler, PA and was raised, went to school, and started my own family in the Butler area. I was born there the second month of 1943 and moved away in July of 1979. Since I lived in the Butler area for 36 plus years of my life, I believe I have the right to call it my home town. Although we lived in the country, it was the closest town, only about 8 miles away. I worked over 17 years at Pullman-Standard, which does not now exist. In fact, that area of town does not look the same, not even close.

I got an email this morning from Jeep advertising its newest line of vehicles. I guess it is because I own a Jeep Liberty and get it serviced at the Jeep dealer. Anyway, it reminded me of my home town and that Butler was the “home of the Jeep”. The American Bantam Car Company, located in Butler, was the first company to deliver a proto-type “Jeep” to the Army and won the contract to deliver many more. There is a park in the center of Butler that has a monument proclaiming that Butler was the home of the Jeep.

There would have been no way that a company as small as the Bantam Car Company could supply all the jeeps that the Army would need, so Willys and Ford used the American Bantam Car Company’s prints and specs to also manufacture the Jeep. It was said that the US got worried when Hitler ordered 1000 tanks from General Motors and told them not to ship them, that they would pick them up on the way through Detroit. Now, I don’t know if that was true, but even if it were not, the rumor was enough to get the American people worried about that war going on over there in Europe.

Any way, if you are interested in more information on the history of the jeep, this is one of many sites that give some history:

And if you have the time, this web site that was written by the Bantam Jeep Festival people of Butler has a video that is well worth watching. It is rather long but does do a great job of giving you the complete history of the Jeep:

You all have a good weekend.


  1. Interesting story, and I learned something new,since I didn't know about pa,and the jeep. thanks for sharing this info,I will go to the links.Blessings jane

  2. Yep, to echo Jane's comment. Shoot, I even watched the long story on my Big Screen.
    Personally I never was a big Jeep fan but my fishing buddy had a Cherokee that he pulled his BIG boat with. It weren't pretty but it did the job. My 4WD was an IH Harvester Scout,

  3. Diz, I'm thinking about selling my F-350 and buying an SUV. For 5 yrs I drove a Jeep Grand Cherokee Ltd, and it was the best car I ever had. Now I am considering a Jeep Liberty or Jeep Patriot. Can you tell me something about your Liberty? You can email me privately if you want, gypsy97 @ gmail.com. Thanks.

  4. Jane, I didn't know how quickly they designed the thing. Imprssive and no computer to help.

    Ben, My old neighbor in PA loved IH stuff. He even restored an older IH truck. I believe it was bigger than a one ton, but don't remember what it was.

    Gypsy, I like the Liberty but mine is an old one. They are much bigger today. I will send you an email.

  5. I have a 50 Willys cj, with the original flathead four. Been in the family for 61 years now.
    Going to be still all original when I pass it on to my son.

  6. Spud, It is greate to keep a vehicle in good shape and in the family for generations. My cousin has my Grandp'a 1940 Ford, and as far as I know, is passing it on down to one of his sons.