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Jim Thelander

1911 Sampson

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Anybody know another Sampson owner?? I think there is a guy in Texas.

David Paige in Toomsbawa, Queensland Australia had two skeletons several years ago, but I have not been able to find him. Have a letter to the previous owner requesting info.

Any leads on above, any data, information, number built, literature, parts (ha, ha). Would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks, Jim

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Do you have a picture of what you are looking for? There was a Samson tractor and truck built by GM years ago, like in the teens or 20's.

Information might be available from the Sloan Museum in Flint, MI.

Here is a link with contact information.

Sloan Museum

Edited by Larry Schramm (see edit history)

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The HCCA roster shows Richard Longcoy in Pennsylvania as having one. Also, a few years ago the Maxwell folks had a centennial, and a Sampson showed up. (United States Motors swallowed up Maxwell, Sampson, Brush and Stoddard-Dayton, so Sampson was considered part of the Maxwell family tree.) Tom Reese could probably tell you whose it was, if it wasn't yours.

Gil Fitzhugh, Morristown, NJ

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The Samson tractor was a GM venture, and was created to go in competition with Henry's Model F Fordson. It was not as well built and is a rare and highly sought after collectible tractor today. They were only built for several years. The Sampson Auto was a different company and was gone in the 1913 US Motors bankruptcy. As said above, Benjamin Brisco was only able to save Maxwell. Dandy Dave!

Samson Tractor - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Edited by Dandy Dave (see edit history)

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Hi, it was me at Green Castle Maxwell Meet 1994. Someone called Del Derees about locating cars that were in "United States Motors". I live a block from Del, he called me indicating that they wanted to replicate a post card on main street with a load of Maxwells. They put me in the front row, an honor.

I'm looking for anything on it. They were built in Detroit on Oakland Street.

Great car, with its original floor mat, and registration!!

Thanks for the reply.

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Samson tractors were built in Janesville, Wisconsin, by GM, recently closed after building Suburbans for years. Sad ending, great people

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I have seen a 1928 Sampson (French or English car?) and a 1929? Sampson tractor. The 28 is a two seater roadster looks like it never had a top, imported just after WW2 four cylinder double overhead cams (same type car took second in the 1929 French Formula One race). The tractor was pulled from a scrap yard in WI in the late 50's? and is now fully restored in running condition (one of two remaining I was told?). Both are owned by people who could care less if anybody else ever knows about them.

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Graham Man - the French or English Sampson you might have seen will most likely be a Salmson. There were both French and English versions.

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You are correct thinking back. If I remember correctly he built airplane engines during WW1, switched to cars after the war?

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SAMSON TRACTOR COMPANY was one of the various General Motors companies that were founded after Durant rejoined General Motors for the second time.The first Samson Tractors were built as part of an ill-fated foray into Tractor and agricultural machinery building by Durant,.In 1917, Durant had decided that General Motors should acquire three small companies in the farm machinery business, and initial sales were promising, no doubt because of the War, but later developments were unsuccessful, and in 1920 the experiment was over having lost $12 million!

It is interesting to note, that Automobile for April 5, 1917 headlined “Durant Buying Holt Tractor – Negotiations Under Way for Purchase of Caterpillar Tractor Business”. It was mentioned: “If this deal should be consummated it would assure a large scale production of Canadaaterpillar tractors which have proved so capable in the belligerent nations and also on the American farms.” This deal did not go through, but you can see the Holt company in Stockton and Peoria was Durant’s first choice, and Samson was an afterthought. Caterpillar built a tractor in 1917-18, called the 2½ Ton Artillery Tractor that was designed by Holt and was a high speed (15 mph) Caterpillar track-type tractor powered by the famous L-head Cadillac V-8 Engine with over 1000 being built. Some of these must have been imported for military use, and then sold off onto the civilian market post-War.

Now General Motors and “CAT” have come full circle, with the Caterpillar 3126 Diesel HUI engine the standard diesel for the 1998 Chevrolet & G.M.C. medium duty trucks now built in Flint and Pontiac truck plants.

It has been alleged that Durant was stung by the loss of sales to Henry Ford’s Fordson tractor, and so he bought the Samson Sieve-Grip tractor from California, which was moderately successful. The Samson Tractors were manufactured from 1918 until 1919 in part of the former Monroe plant in Pontiac which was leased to General Motors after Monroe himself went bankrupt and the plant was acquired by the William Small Company They were initially manufactured in the Samson California factory in Stockton, California. This first Samson Tractor was the three-wheeled Samson Sieve-Grip Model 15-30 H.P., which used a Northway-built engine, Model 68 of four cylinders, L-head design of 4¾ x 4¾ in. bore and stroke. This was followed by the Models M and D Modified and transferred to a new factory in Janesville, Wisconsin, the Sieve-Grip proved too expensive to compete against the Fordson and was replaced by the Samson Model M which was a Fordson lookalike with a gap between the radiator top-tank and the fuel tank.

The Model M Samson Tractor used a Northway-built L-head engine of 4 x 5½ in., 350 cu. in. Displacement, and which used a three-bearing crankshaft, force-fed lubrication, Kingston variable-jet carburettor, and a gearbox with 2 forward speeds and 1 reverse. In the U.K. they were sold for £330, £35 more than the Samson Model 15 truck!

There was also another Tractor, the Model D just mentioned, plus Farm lighting equipment, and “the Samson Nine-Passenger Whole Family Car” designed for large farm families with rear seats that could easily be removed to haul farm products. This experimental car was actually built in Flint in 1919, and all Samson products including the car, were exhibited at the Wisconsin fair, 8-13 September 1919. The engine used was the Chevrolet-FB based Saginaw Products unit as used in the Samson Model 25 Truck: see below. Bearing in mind that Chevrolets were often used as Tractors and for pulling farm ploughs, etc. by way of a pulley off the driving wheels, perhaps it was also intended that the Samson car would also be used as a farm utility as well as a vehicle?

How's that?

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This is like the one I saw...Model D? This one was at the Janseville WI plant till it closed, not sure where it is today.

SampsonTractorCOPY_t700.jpg?f40c0e74b997dbb01ce524758e0d04a31382c8af

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Thanks for the reply. The tractors were made by GM in Janesville Wisconsin. They are spelled with out the "P". Sampson car were only made in 1911, in Detroit. I have the only one which is runnable, and restored.

To my knowledge there are only 4 1/2. One in Texas, one in PA, 1 1/2 in Australia, but missing lots of parts.

Thanks for the reply. If two were imported back to the US, i would very interested in seeing them.

Thanks, Jim

586-972-3677

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I grew up in Toowoomba (aboriginal for swamp) and knew Dave and his Sampson, saw it several times. Let me know if you are still interested in his whereabouts, I could let him know you would like to contact him. Thanks RonB

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Ron, thanks for the reply. I finally did track Dave down. He moved. We talked on Skype and also got the video working. I was looking for him for several years, until I got on this site.

Thanks, again.

Jim Thelander in Virginia USA

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I have to believe, due to its rarity, that it would be impossible to price it. A well-advertised auction is the only way

I can think of, but one might want to notify major museums and collections before putting it on the block. We are

talking almost one-of-a-kind here!

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Thank you for the reply . I guess the only thing more secretive than this car , Is answers about this car . Lol If I was to look at auction for this vehicle . Would I start my quest at a mom n pop auction ? Something more in the lines of a Barrett Jackson , or a Christie's caliber auction ? And if I did happen to find one at an auction should I be thinking of spending thousands , tens of , hundreds , or millions ? Thanks again for your reply prs519

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Hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving! Still looking for any info, parts, etc on the 1911 Sampson. It has an Atlas Engine, 4 cyl which has an aluminum crank case, and a rear mounted crankcase.

Thanks, Jim

810-689 6633

Will send a pic next time.

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And to finish thanking you for the lead THANKS. Time does fly, I'm back in Michigan, for good and will call / visit the Sloan Museum.

Jim T

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