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Southern Plaza Express International sleeper. This picture has to have been winter of 58/59, St. Louis Terminal. I almost got on this sleeper run, but not enough seniority. I lived Springfield, MO and worked out of St. Louis until lay off from Ryder buying into Southern.

Southern Plaza was made up of two companies. Southern and Reliable. That is the reason it was called Southern Plaza, the Reliable line. From the drivers I knew that worked for Reliable, they were from Springfield, MO. Fred Veregge Collection.




Here is an article that I think came out of TRANSPORT TOPICS and I see that it was dated March 1969. The pair didn't leave together as implied. Enlarge this picture and you can see the lettering, such as the D on the left extended to DIRECT and the C on the right COAST to COAST. The colors were very close to Mayflower with the yellow on the doors and maybe the letters.

DC didn't buy these tractors and only ran them until the weather got warm enough that air-conditioning was needed. These did not come with AC. One of the drivers complaints was that as co-driver, you set so high in your seat that you had to dress before you climbed out of the bunk, if you should be in town. You were exposed and as the driver, you felt like you could jerk the wheel and throw your partner out the window. Other complaints were the Greyhound mirrors. I could go on, but It wasn't very long before the GMC engineers stopped meeting the drivers and asking what they thought. Me and my co-driver Don Vanston (retired in Arkansas) got to make one trip before they were passed back to General Motors. I remember we got a lot of attention as we crossed America. Fred Veregge Collection

Here is a print of a water color of a D C truck done in 1968 just before they merged with TIME, and after they dropped the ONLY COAST TO COAST CARRIER. There were four of these prints done, and done up what looked like the four seasons. This is the only one that survived that I had. I gave the rest away by the time I left DC in 1971. There should be others out there and would be great if the rest of the collection could be found and displayed. The original prints were large, close to 28 by 9 inches.




Here is a very unusual pic of a set of WOLF WAGONS that worked both the city and the road. Both units had (322 cu in Chev. engine with six speed Allison auto. transmission and when hooked together pulled in unision. The idea was that yoou would load in one city for delivery in the next city without having to cross-dock the freight. (didn't work that way). The driver had an inside door leading to the freight compartment. The engine set in the middle and you could only check the radiator thru an inspection door in the freight box. Also, the only time you were on the road was when you crossed it. This was the spring of 1958 and before the year was up, POWELL BROS. TRUCK LINE sold out to TIME giving them direct authority between Tulsa OK and St. Louis, MO., also Memphis and KC MO.

These wagons were hard to control, as back then they didn't know to put the lighter one on the back. I always remember this one old timer returning from Kansas City down OLD highway 13 using that saying, describing his experience. "The only time I was on the road was when I crossed it."

The designer and builder of the these was a man with the last name WOLF from Dallas Texas. He had sold (?) several units to East Texas Motor Freight. He also sold some to ARMOUR Packing Co. in KC to deliver their products. These at Armour had the appearance of a half cab and had a diesel mounted up front. Fred Veregge Collection




Here is a group of pic of Highway Post Office that I drove between Worthington, MN and Philip, SD while living in Sioux Falls, SD.

This first pic 1954 is of a Twin Coach Fagol parked next to a BECK bus made into a HPO. This was taken in Des Moines, IA where the main office was for this contractor that had most of Iowa and surrounding northern states.

The body of these Fageols were from Freuhauf trailers. Note the tell-tail front emblem and wings that Freuhauf was noted for in the 50s. The pancake gasoline engine of these early units lay on its side midway.

This picture was taken inside an HPO in Sioux Falls, SD. It is Christmas of 1955 and three postoffice clerks are working the mail as it is being readied to travel on to Worthington, MN and post offices between. At Worthington, they will connect with two RPOs. (Railroad Post Offices)

Picture taken winter of 55 next day after the driver (not me) abandoned the unit in a blizzard about 40 mile west of Sioux Falls, SD. These units held so much water for both the cooling of the engine and heating of the large interior, that the contractor did not use antifreeze. The driver was supposed to crawl under and slash the hoses if it was ever left out in freezing weather. In this case, it wasn't done.

Veregge's Auto Shop, ca 1944 Garfield Ave. Highway 71, South Park, St. Joseph, Missouri, Brothers Al and Fred Veregge ran a successful Auto repair business until the death of Al in 1943. Today the building is a car wash.

This picture is dated 1932. The tow truck is made out of a Pierce Arrow touring car. Not sure what year. Maybe about 1928. I remember driving it when I was 11. I should say I steered it. Dad & I went after a new 41 Chev that an old man drove thru a farmers fence about 25 miles out of town. The tow truck transmission locked up in neutral after pulling the car. Dad couldn't get it in gear, so chewed some gum, using it to patch the radiator of the Chev, hooked the Chev to the wrecker and pulled it home with me steering it.

This is a 1932 Ford panel truck picture taken 1932 in St. Joseph, Missouri. On the spare tire cover it says FORD PRODUCT, COLUMBIA, MO. This is my Uncle, proud of his new truck and the product he sales. This 32 Ford must have had one of the first V-8s Ford produced.

I know very little about these picture except this accident happened in about 1947 where Highway 66 went thru Quapaw, Okla. Quapaw is in the extreme northeast Oklahoma where old 66 ran from Joplin, MO thru Baxter Springs Kansas and turned south into Oklahoma, Quapaw being the first town.

These pictures of this horrendous accident were taken after they pulled the tractor out of the lobby of the GATEWAY HOTEL. There is no picture of the trailer. In picture #4 is a car that was flattened to the pavement. Looking down the street is a 2nd car that is picture #5. The driver was killed. Fred Vallen Collection.

Inaugural run of first Highway Post Office between the cities on the cover, January 11, 1954. These were the furthermost north operations of such that had up to now been a success in less severe climates.

These traveling post office were to replace the RPOs (Railroad Post Office) that were discontinued due to the decline of passenger trains and rail lines being abandoned.

The weather was COLD and averaged 5 above for most of the day. That didn't stop the crowds from gathering for what must have been the most exciting thing to come to their town sense the circus.

On this day, one bus left Sioux Falls, SD traveling west at the same time one left Philip, SD traveling east. On the East bound HPO was a photographer and reporter from the National Geographic Magazine. Traveling west was a reporter from a Sioux Falls Paper. The two would meet in Chamberlain, SD.

CHAMBERLAIN, S. D. The two meet on the banks of the Missouri River. Pictures are taken of Indian dancers, antique cars and an Ox drawn cart that led the parade to the post office. The Ox had trouble getting their footing on the icy streets and for a moment the HPO pushed the cart to get the parade going. There would ba a two page colored spread in National Geographic of the event in a later issue.

Afterwards, the traveling Post Office got down to business of picking up the mail at the post office, meeting trains and trucks on their route. If someone walked up and handed them a letter, they would take it if it was stamped, other wise they did not sell stamps or do any duties of the regular post office. I am not sure when this run was canceled, maybe in the mid 70s when trucks and distribution centers took over.

KIMBALL, S. D. The High school band braved frozen lips to play for the Post Office Transportation Department dignitaries. This is WHITE LAKE, S. D. and despite the cold, this town and every town we went into along the route had a parade ready to excort the HPO into town, and there, more people than the population of the town would be ready to tour and marvel over this modern means of expiditing their mail.



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