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12th Armored Division >> General Discussion >> WWII International Halftrack Information
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Author Topic:  WWII International Halftrack Information
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posted 9/10/2020 7:54:55 AM  Reply w/Quote
We have recently acquired an International Harvester halftrack (M-9A1) from WWII. It has US markings: USA 4069172. White star on hood. SILVER II on drivers and commanders doors. Upon disassembly, we found fine brown sand packed in every crevice and void. Were reasonably sure this belonged to the 12th Armored Division while training in Tennessee. Any information about this vehicle, its crew, pictures, would be greatly appreciated. Jesse.

Bob Scherer
Junior Member
Member # 119

Posts: 117
From: Yardley, PA
Registered: 10/11/2005
posted 9/10/2020 8:55:53 AM    Click here to view the profile for Bob Scherer  Click here to email Bob Scherer  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
Hi Jesse,
Thank you for your post. I will send this information to people who may be able to help you. Where did you acquire this vehicle and what leads you to believe it vehicle was once with the 12th AD?
Bob Scherer

Bob Scherer
Junior Member
Member # 119

Posts: 117
From: Yardley, PA
Registered: 10/11/2005
posted 9/10/2020 9:17:32 AM    Click here to view the profile for Bob Scherer  Click here to email Bob Scherer  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
Can you email me some photos?

rwscherer@verizon.net

MikeWoldenberg
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Member # 16

Posts: 1098
From: University at Buffalo (NY)
Registered: 6/1/2004
posted 9/10/2020 9:40:36 AM    Click here to view the profile for MikeWoldenberg  Click here to email MikeWoldenberg  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote


Perhaps there are documents like a VEHICLE IDENTIFICATION NUMBER recorded everytime the
vehicle was licensed. You might be able to
trace the ownership all the way back to
1945.

Bob Scherer
Junior Member
Member # 119

Posts: 117
From: Yardley, PA
Registered: 10/11/2005
posted 9/10/2020 4:59:01 PM    Click here to view the profile for Bob Scherer  Click here to email Bob Scherer  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
Jesse,
Heres what Ive been able to glean from knowledgeable people. First, you see Mikes suggestion. Our Museum curator provided the following:
Military vehicles have a manufacturer's serial number stamped on the frame (driver's side front). This is not always the same as the number painted on the hood (it's a long story). That serial number only becomes a VIN if the vehicle is titled/registered by a civilian. Otherwise, the vehicle is essentially untraceable.
The M9A1 was only manufactured in one location- the Springfield, Ohio plant. Once the vehicles were signed over to the Army, the manufacturer ceased to keep records on them.
International Harvester only produced 1,407 of the M9a1- and the vast majority of them were sent overseas to the UK and Soviet Union. The few remaining M9a1s were used for training stateside. The 12th's 134th Armored Ordnance Battalion was designated the 'Harvester Battalion' due to the majority of its members coming from the International Harvester Company. As a publicity measure, the unit was equipped with International Harvester M9A1 Half tracks during its time in the US. If the M9A1 was initially obtained by a civilian in Kentucky or Tennessee, it is almost certain that the vehicle was in the 134th.
To be sure, careful stripping of the paint on the front bumper and lower rear armor (on either side of the door) might reveal the unit of assignment. Unfortunately, most half tracks were not registered/titled as street vehicles when sold/given away as surplus- most were used as farm vehicles. A title search wouldn't hurt, though!
Another person who also owns a halftrack recommended posting the question on halftrackinfo.com or on the International Harvester half-track facebook site: https://www.facebook.com/groups/658148164327673/?notif_id=1551078814101452if_t=group_r2j_approved
Good luck!


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posted 9/11/2020 6:16:09 AM  Reply w/Quote
Serial number 2089. The halftrack was clearly in US service by the markings present. As far as I know, the 12th Armored Division was the only stateside user of International halftracks. There was a lot of brown sand present under the rear floor, under the layers of dried oil and grease, and in other voids. Clearly from its very early days. The soil survey of Walkerton Tennessee reveals that the majority of the top layer is brown sand. Still looking for more evidence. Jesse.

Bob Scherer
Junior Member
Member # 119

Posts: 117
From: Yardley, PA
Registered: 10/11/2005
posted 9/11/2020 9:20:20 AM    Click here to view the profile for Bob Scherer  Click here to email Bob Scherer  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
Good luck Jesse.
You know a lot more about halftracks than I do. Concerning the dust and dirt I'm sure you know that many of the surplus halftracks that didn't go overseas were used by farmers. That could account for some of it. Help educate us and let us know what you learn. Thanks for preserving history!
Bob