Diner Hotline’s DIVCO page

Photo of a Divco nameplate in my collection

DIVCO was an acronym for a concern called the Detroit Industrial Vehicle Company. Divco built primarily what was known as multi-stop delivery vehicles for service industries like dairy and laundry deliveries. Known for years as America’s Favorite Milk Truck these trucks were once ubiquitous throughout North America. The following info is from Wikipedia about Divco trucks and the company……

Divco was a brand name of delivery trucks in the United States. Divco is an acronym which stands for Detroit Industrial Vehicles COmpany. Founded in 1926, Divco was well known for its pioneering delivery vehicles, especially the home delivery milk trucks. From 1926 until 1986, Divco produced multi-stop delivery trucks unlike any others. Only the VW Beetle stayed in production with the same basic model for a longer period of time. Divco trucks have become popular collectible vehicles today.

In 1957, Divco merged with the Wayne Works based in Richmond, Indiana to form Divco-Wayne. During the Divco-Wayne era, some Divco trucks were modified with seats and windows from the Wayne Works to produce a Divco Dividend Bus. But very few of these units were built between 1959 and 1961. The truck manufacturing of Divco-Wayne continued to be through the Divco portion. Divco was spun off from the company in 1968, and production ended in 1986. (Wayne became an Indian Head company, and continued manufacturing buses until bankruptcy and liquidation in 1992).

Divco’s rich history has been researched in some depth by the Divco Club of America, and more information from before and after the corporate marriage to Wayne can be found at Divco History.

In some parts of the Western United States during the late 1950’s and early 1960’s, the Divco Milk trucks delivered more than just milk, they also delivered Iodine-131 in contaminated milk from fallout from above ground nuclear tests in Nevada.[1]

I have managed to photograph quite a few of these from the late 1990’s right up to the present (2012). This page will feature all my photos of these unique survivors! As an introduction to this page I wrote a post in my regular Diner Hotline page….. https://dinerhotline.wordpress.com/2012/10/28/divco-americas-favorite-milk-truck_intro-101/

The following photos are all from me with the exception of a few……

These next shots were taken on Route 28 at the Lawrence/Methuen town line. Scannell’s Dairy of Methuen was still doing home delivery at this point (September of 2000).
I understand they are no longer doing it ……..

Rosev Dairy in Chelsea, Massachusetts has this beautifully restored 1930’s Divco-Twin Milk Truck. This style predates the more familiar “Snub-nose” Style of truck.

Garelick Farms Dairy in Franklin, Massachusetts has this divco sitting out in front of their plant on Route 140

These next 8 shots are from a field located on
Lunenburg Road – Route 70, Lancaster, Massachusetts

These next 4 photos are of Chuck Puleo’s restored Divco at
Puleo’s Dairy & Restaurant in Salem, Massachusetts

These next 8 photos are from the “Wheels of Time”  antique car & truck show that was held in South Easton, Massachusetts on October 19, 2008

The following 2 photos were taken by Steve Repucci at the Seashore
Trolley Museum

This truck was found recently on the side of Route 12 in Oxford, Massachusetts

I was just reminded about another Divco I photographed in the last couple of years (I had forgotten about this one). It was at Joe Merli’s Canal Street Station Village Museum in Duanesburg, NY. Along side U.S. Rte. 20 west of Albany, Merli has amassed a collection of old buildings and vehicles. Sitting next to the old 9 & 20 Diner (formerly of Schodack, NY) was an old Divco milk truck.

13 thoughts on “Diner Hotline’s DIVCO page

  1. Wow, those are fabulous Larry! It’s sad to see them in such disrepair but they are so lovely as restored! Great web page, keep up the great work 🙂

    • 1968 fresh out of the service.Working for a tow truck company in Arlington,MA “Mal’s Night and Day Towing” still in business! I towed about 10 or so DIVCOS from Ware Dairy in Belmont ,MA to a junkyard in Woburn,Ma. At the time I had wished for the money and space to save them!! Great story thanks for the memories..

  2. Hi Larry,

    I’ve been meaning to send you this link: https://www.google.com/maps/preview#!data=!1m8!1m3!1d3!2d-70.833336!3d42.980633!2m2!1f336.21!2f84.14!4f75!2m7!1e1!2m2!1sUrozM9Rz5eoUUGeAyahXlA!2e0!5m2!1sUrozM9Rz5eoUUGeAyahXlA!2e0&fid=5 .

    It’s an old dairy farm on Rt 1 in North Hampton that has a Divco parked under the trees in the yard (not in this street view, however).

    If you’re going north on Rt 1, it’s about 1/4 mile past Rt 111.


  3. My dad drove a Divco for Hood Milk in Charlestown Mass in the 60’s and 70’s. I have great memories of sitting on his lap while he drove us around the block.

  4. Hi Larry.

    Thank you for posting the photos of the Scannell’s Dairy Divco. Scannell’s Dairy was founded by my 2nd great-grandfather in the late nineteenth century, and was operated by my grandfather and two uncles, until my Uncle Mike’s sudden passing in 2007. As children, my brother and I were fortunate to have the experience of riding along in the milk truck while our grandfather or one of our uncles delivered milk to the patrons of Scannell’s Dairy, both private homes and schools.

    I am curious about when you took these photos, if you did indeed capture the images. If you have originals/negatives or higher Rez images, I would be happy to work something out to get access to them for my family archive.

    Thanks for keeping the Divco alive!

    • This may not be the place to find out that info. You might want to try the Divco Club of America at divco.org. They should be able to point you in the right direction.

  5. I just recently found this discussion and I happen to have a few pictures of a DIVCO I saw here In MA several years ago (location and date unfortunately apparently unrecorded):

    ma (    ) divco c ed copy
    ma (    ) divco b ed_edited-1 copy
    ma (    ) divco a ed copy

    I too have some of the one at the Seashore Trolley Museum, but those aren’t ready for posting yet. I also have some pictures of what appear to be of the locomotive at what became Canal Street Station long prior to its restoration, but those aren’t ready either.

    Fun thread!

  6. I worked for Mal’s Towing Arlington,MA in 1968. I towed 10 Divco milk trucks owned by the Ware Dairy of Belmont ,MA. Recently out of business,to a junk yard in Woburn,MA. They were crushed for scrap.Even then I knew it was a part of Americana that should have been saved..

    • I have been trying to research any info on Ware Dairy in Belmont Ma….My dad worked for them until 1968…I used to help him sometimes and rode in the truck many times….sorry to hear so many of the trucks were destroyed….can’t find any info about the business….I’d appreciate any info you could pass on to me if you have any…Thanks

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