The Elkhart Collection | Lot 1234
1936 White Model 706 'Glacier National Park' Tour Bus
$450,500 USD | Sold
| Elkhart, Indiana
23 October 2020
- An icon of mid-century American vacations
- Designed by the legendary Alexis de Sakhnoffsky
- Originally pressed into service at Yellowstone National Park
- Restored in period-correct Glacier National Park “Reds” livery
- Correct 318 cu. in. 16A flathead six-cylinder engine
- The ideal party wagon, with room for 17 and a sunroof!
The White Company of Cleveland, Ohio, manufactured over 500 examples of their Model 706 between 1936 and 1939 for use at America’s national parks. These mighty beasts featured roll-back canvas convertible tops over their 17-passenger interiors, accessed by no fewer than eight doors, and were handsomely styled by the noted industrial designer Count Alexis de Sakhnoffsky for coachbuilders Bender of Cleveland. Some examples remain in service at various parks to this day, while others have been restored to evoke wonderful memories of family vacations long ago.
Glacier National Park’s fleet of 18 original White buses, acquired at a cost of $90,000, was popularly known as the “Reds” and the drivers as “red jammers” because of the sound the unsynchronized gears of the transmission made when the driver shifted on the steep roads of the park. They were regularly used to give tours up Going-to-the-Sun Road, one of several scenic roads built at the park by the Great Northern Railroad. Today several of these buses remain in service at Glacier National Park and are still giving rides.
The Model 706 offered here was originally pressed into service at Yellowstone National Park as bus no. 363. Today, it is still running an original 318-cubic-inch 16A flathead six-cylinder gasoline engine and has been restored in Glacier “Reds” livery with red-and-black steel wheels by Krown Restoration in Wilsall, Montana. Inside features and comfortable tan leather bench seating within under the roll-back black canvas top and. There is also a surprisingly sizable rear cargo area tucked behind the final row of seating. Inspection shows the paintwork, interior, and top fabric to all be very well preserved restored and still in excellent overall condition, while the undercarriage shows only light wear from occasional use.
Few vehicles offer more opportunity for fun—with 16 of your friends and family, no less!