Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Norwalk Ohio, home of the truckers, has a pretty cool video for their history

Why is the school mascot a trucker?

In 1912, John F. Ernsthausen, a native of Elmore, Ohio, started a business in Norwalk. With a partner, he bought produce from Huron County farmers and shipped the fruits and vegetables to city markets. As the business grew, shipping by railroad became problematic because the trains didn’t run enough and the produce would spoil.

Sole owner of his company by the early 1920s, Mr. Ernsthausen solved his produce shipping problem by renting trucks. In 1932, he decided to forego the fruits and vegetables market and concentrate solely on shipping freight for other customers after realizing that trucking produce was a one way job, and that the trucks were returning empty, but still using fuel.

By the mid-1940s, Mr. Ernsthausen had developed his Norwalk Truck Lines into both the city’s dominant employer and one of the biggest over-the-road trucking firms in the U.S.

In the 1930s the NHS sports teams were called the Fighting Phantoms, and that nickname was preceded by the Pilots.

check out the lanterns on the running board!

Arguably one of the first business owners in America to seek commercial “naming rights,” Mr. Ernsthausen came up with the idea of calling the Norwalk High School sports teams the “Truckers” – a namesake for his company and a reminder of the industry for which the city of Norwalk was well-known. For this, Mr. Ernsthausen was willing to pay. In the fall of 1946, he sent his top assistant to football practice at Whitney Field to meet with coach Grant Walls and the team.

The Norwalk Truck Lines assistant executive offered a proposal: Mr. Ernsthausen would buy all new uniforms – helmets, pads, jerseys, pants, and shoes – for the football team if the team changed its name from the Raiders to the Truckers, wearing the colors of navy blue and gold.

The team voted unanimously to do it

As one senior football player noted, “There wasn’t any question about it. We had leather helmets that were so beat up and old, you could fold them and put them in your back pocket. A lot of us didn’t have (football) shoes; we had to take what we could find from a big pile of old shoes in the equipment room.”

Thus the Truckers were born. The team with the unique name and brand-new blue-and-gold uniforms debuted at Whitney Field in September 1948.

and it makes for cool graduation cakes

seriously bitchin simply cool video. (pipe dream, ha!)

the city has a town wide garage sale. Seriously, I dig that. Some cities have assholes going around to collect taxes on garage sale people. Yes, that happens. Also fine them for not having a business license.

Fisher Auto Body can trace its beginnings to the horse-drawn carriage shop in Norwalk where the Fisher's learned their trade before moving to Detroit.The first horseless carriage built in Norwalk was a steam car produced by Ethan Sly in 1902. By 1905, forty-nine Norwalk residents owned automobiles.

In 1912, John Ernsthausen and Rolla Fader started the Norwalk Truck Company, which evolved into the Norwalk Truck Line. The Truck Line became the largest independently-owned trucking company in the world. The company served as inspiration for Norwalk High School’s mascot, the Truckers. Profits from the company’s success eventually funded the Ernsthausen Foundation, which continues to impact Norwalk today. With funds from both the Ernsthausen Foundation and the City of Norwalk, the Ernsthausen Community Center was built in 1989. In 1994, indoor pools and a weight room were added to this state-of-the-art recreation complex.

 In 1962, the Norwalk Dragway opened on 100 acres with 850 seats and a 6-row high stand. Bill Bader Sr. bought the Dragway in 1974. In 1981, Norwalk hosted the International Hot Rod Association (IHRA) World Nationals for the first time. Over 40 years later, renamed Summit Motorsports Park, it is still in the Bader family and now features 26,000 grandstand seats on 204 acres.

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