Posted 3 years ago
I have two stackable railroad gayloard crates that were used by Harley Davidson back in the early 1920's. These shipping containers have a iron frame and wooden panels. These are rusty and weathered as they were found laying near the railroad tracks in Milwaukee many years ago. They were given to me about three years ago and I had no idea what they were for at the time. While visiting the HD Museum I was able to make the connection as one of my other smaller crate has the letters "H.D.M.CO" stamped onto the wooden slat. These larger crates are the same construction as my other stamped HD crate. (included a pic of the smaller HD factory crate)
I recently took a few pics of my 7 foot long crates and had an older HD factory employee ID them. Said they were called gaylords as these crates were railroad shipping containers for bulk parts. These larger crates were for motorcycle frames/fenders and partially assembled motorcycles.
As you can see from my pictures, they are in poor shape with plenty of rust and most of the wood missing. The cool factor on these crates went way up now that I know they carried many HD parts at one time. Now I need to find older photos of this larger style crate in use so I can see how they were labeled and stamped to help me restore my crates. If anyone has any vintage HD Factory pictures with this larger crate in use please let me know.