I had the honor of being able to visit the Kirkham International Motor Collection a while back and figured Big Rig Week was the perfect time to share some of this fantastic collection. To top it off, I visited during a classic heavy truck club’s open house and many of its members had professionally driven these vehicle when new.
The eldest member of the collection is this 1913 International MW high wheeler. I’ve seen this running and driving at various summer cars shows and it has that wonderfully distinctive antique engine clatter and thrum.
Only slightly newer is this 1917 Model H which saved was by noted classic vehicle rescuer/hoarder Stan Reynolds in 1956. It was then restored by heavy truck collector Ron Carey before finding its way to this collection.
It even has a mini version in its bed!
The Hoover Dam was built using International HS-104C trucks, like this one. I wouldn’t be surprised if this particular example, which ended its working career with the Colorado Department of Highways, labored at the dam site, as only one hundred were ever built. A full restoration bought it back to its original specification.
Capacity is five tons with a Hall-Scott four-cylinder gas engine. Power goes through a three speed transmission, then a chain drive. It even has two separate reverse gears!
I’d rank this 1937 International D-30 as one of the best looking big trucks ever. Timeless lines.
The interior might not be plush but there is an elegant simplicity about it.
There was a whole row of more modern but still classic big trucks like this 1951 International LFD 405. It is powered by a 180hp NBH Cummings with a 10 speed Fuller transmission.
A few more gauges than the 1937 and a one piece windshield but the cab itself is quite similar.
How about something a little smaller? This boxy 1962 International CH 90 delivery van has 152cid four cylinder power.
This ex-bakery truck sports a three-speed manual transmission.
The half-of-a-V8 four-cylinder engine was also found in the compact pickup, as well as in early Scouts.
The smallest working International on display is this 1964 Cub Cadet 100 tractor. It features a 24cid 10hp Kohler engine with six possible forward ratios. Built from 1963 to 1965, production for all years totaled 42,706 units.
This Texas Travelall Custom sports something a bit unusual…
…air conditioning on a 1964 model.
What could be more cool than an International Harvester fridge?
I can’t imagine the four-door model like this 1973 1010 Camper Special was ever common. It must be fantastically rare these days especially in this condition. This 3/4 ton truck is powered by a 392cid V8 engine and automatic transmission.
The interior of the Wagon Master is in original and un-restored condition with dual bench seats.
A shrunken bed completes the rear.
I remember these Loadstars being popular as dump trucks and school buses. This 1973 International 1700 Loadstar was retired from fire truck duty. It served in British Columbia and accumulated a mere 8850 miles on its 392cid V8 and five-speed transmission.
I absolutely love the paint scheme on this 1979 International Scout Traveler. Only a SUV from the Seventies could pull off bright orange.
Speaking of the seventies, check the upholstery on the inside!
The coloring on this 1981 International F4370 Eagle makes the orange Scout almost look tame in comparison.
Old factory photos, brochures and tin signs cover the walls.
Not all the trucks are big, but they are all International.
This cutaway model of a 1956 549cid V8 engine certainly sparked a lot of conversations. An operational engine would have made 257hp @ 3400rpms when new.
Shall we step outside? Rows and rows of parts and project trucks await.
There are a couple real vintage models among the throng of Scouts and pickup trucks.
International R-110 cabover looking very complete except for the missing bumper.
International C-110 compact pickup truck.
International BC-170 with a dual rear wheel axle.
Here is a closer look at the International R-150 Metro van behind the BC-170. This one came from Edmonton which is a few hours north.
That concludes our brief tour of this amazing collection. It is great to see large trucks being preserved and restored. Not many people have the inclination, skill or even the space to own a classic big rig, so too many have been merely scrapped. These Internationals at least have made it into good hands.