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Friday, January 30, 2015

‘Bigfoot’ Model A Mail Truck is the Stuff of Legends


Copyright © 2015 Bold Ride LLC.

Picture this: it’s the mid 1930s, you’re a rural mail deliveryman, and your day just got a lot harder thanks to two feet of overnight snowfall. What to do, what to do? Well in the case of Montana resident Milton Hill, you could turn a Ford Model A cabriolet into a rough-and-tumble off-road mail truck. 

As you’ve surely guessed, this is Hill’s Model A conversion. It was built in 1936 by fellow Montanan Roman Chupp, it faithfully delivered the mail through thick and thin, and 79 years later it is up for sale on eBay. Can’t say you’ll run into one of these everyday.


A bit of backstory then. According to its owner, the Ford Model A was manufactured in June 1930, and carried out its first six years of existence as any other Model A cabriolet does – that is until Milton Hill bought the Ford.

 When times got tough, Hill supplemented his farming income by delivering the rural mail, and as such he needed a vehicle that could actually get him there. Montana has been known to get its fair share of snow.

So Chupp swapped out the Model A’s rear axle with a lower-geared Model T truck unit, added giant Goodyear tractor tires on 24-inch wooden wheels, and extended the fenders to allow the plucky Ford to float right over and plow straight through the white stuff. The seller even believes those tractor tires to be the truck’s original set from the conversion.


The Model A’s current owner, still a Montanan, nicknamed the car ‘Bigfoot’ and notes that he knows of only three other Model A mail truck conversions in existence, all in much worse condition. Need to know more? Head over to the eBay listing – it’s a veritable encyclopedia on the history of these quirky vehicles.