Mack

Corporate History

1910-1919

1910
The "Manhattan" trade name is dropped, and trucks begin carrying "Mack" nameplate.

The Manhattan Motor Truck Company incorporated in Massachusetts to operate several dealerships in that state.

Mack produced the first motorized hook-and-ladder fire truck for the city of Morristown, NJ.

Charles Mack, the fifth brother, joins Mack Bros. Motor Car Co.

1911
In August of 1911, the brothers sold the company, and the new owners continued operation as the International Motor Company - a holding company for the Mack Brothers Motor Car Company and the Saurer Motor Company, another truck manufacturer which had a plant in Plainfield, New Jersey. The two truck manufacturing companies continue as distinct organizations, but the selling and servicing of Mack and Saurer trucks is combined as a distinct function of the holding company.
  1911 - 1990
Mack produced many types of Fire Apparatus. Some of the larger cities involved were Allentown, PA, Boston, MA, Chicago, IL, and New York, NY, as well as hundreds of smaller fire departments throughout the world.

1912
The International Motor Company's size increases with the addition of the Hewitt Motor Company, a New York City based builder of highly engineered motor trucks..

John and Joseph Mack, who'd been directors of the International Motor Company, leave.

1914
The Hewitt nameplate is discontinued.

The Manhattan Motor Truck Company (which ran the Mack branches in New England) becomes the Mack Motor Truck Company.

The Mack AB was the company's first standardized, high volume model series, introduced in 1914. The first ABs had chain drive or worm drive. In 1920, a dual reduction drive replaced worm drive as an option. The AB filled the medium-duty role and incorporated many innovations particularly adapted to the times. Its simple, classic styling and overwhelming customer acceptance endured continuous modification and a production run extending through 1937, for a total of over 55,000 units.

 

 

1916
The famous AC model was introduced in 1916. With its chain drive rear axle, the AC model earned an unparalleled reputation for reliability and durability, and was called on to help accomplish nearly impossible military and civilian tasks. The AC model was manufactured continuously through 1939 -- a remarkable 24 years, and 40,299 were built. The AC is not only credited with giving Mack its famous Bulldog identity, but also with achieving a degree of success and international fame that has never been accomplished by any other motor truck in history.

Mack built a military armored car on an AB Chassis for the New York National Guard. During World War I, Mack delivered approximately 4,500 AC model trucks of 3-1/2, 5-1/2, and 7-1/2 ton capacity to the US government. During that same period, Mack delivered over 2,000 units to Great Britain. These trucks did an outstanding job under very difficult conditions.

The story goes that the British soldiers ("Tommies") would call out when facing a difficult truck problem, "Aye, send in the Mack Bulldogs!" The primary, and generally universal, story is that the British engineers testing AC's and the Tommys in France said that "the Mack AC's have the tenacity of a bulldog." At that time, the symbol of Great Britain was the bulldog, and this was high praise for the trucks. American "Doughboys" expressed the same opinion of the truck.

A new holding company, the International Motor Truck Corporation, is formed; it assumes the notes payable obligations of the International Motor Company and owns 98 percent of its stock. The International Motor Company, through its ownership of the Mack Brothers Motor Car Company, the Saurer Motor Company, and the Hewitt Motor Company, becomes the operating organization, with its main plants in Allentown, PA (Mack), Plainfield, NJ (Saurer), and Brooklyn, NY (Hewitt).

The International Motor Company also owns the International Mack Motor Corporation, which had been set up in December 1915 to run most of the company-owned branches. However, by the end of World War I, the title of this company is changed to the Mack-International Motor Truck Corporation.

 

1918
The Saurer nameplate is discontinued in the United States.

Mack became the first truck manufacturer to apply air cleaners and oil filters to trucks after Mack engineers discovered the fuel and maintenance savings these products offered customers.

In 1920, Mack pioneered the use of power brakes on trucks by using a vacuum-booster system.

Mack pioneered the use of rubber isolators as cushions in mounting chassis components to improve shock resistance in 1921. The applicability of this technology to automobiles was so great that the Rubber Shock Insulator Company was formed to handle license agreements with other automotive firms.

1919
Mack played a major role in a trans-continental convoy conducted by the US Army. This project underscored the need for a national highway system.