Rollin H. White

Inducted 1997

Beginning in 1900, developed White Steamer cars and trucks that were known for their quality and performance

Provided vehicles for military service during World War I; became a leading manufacturer of trucks and buses after the war.

Innovation seemed to run in the White family. Inventor Thomas White founded the White Sewing Machine Company. His sons, Windsor, Rollin and Walter turned their interest in the horseless carriage into a successful car and truck manufacturing business.

Each of the White brothers contributed a vital element to their partnership. Rollin developed a flash boiler for a steam engine and began building vehicles. Windsor’s forte was administration of the company that the brothers formed in 1900. Walter introduced White vehicles to the military and coordinated motor transportation in France for the War Department during World War I. Between 1901 and 1910, the White Brothers established themselves as the nation’s second-largest producer of steam-powered vehicles. Their customers included Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and William Howard Taft, and celebrities such as “Buffalo Bill” Cody.

The company began producing gasoline-powered vehicles in 1911. By 1919, the White brothers shifted their focus entirely to the production of trucks and commercial vehicles, numbering over 12,000 units annually.


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Class of 1997

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