The Cleveland-based White factory developed into a premier manufacturer of luxury steam automobiles. It used an existing network of White Sewing Machine distributors to sell its vehicles both domestically and internationally.
White turned out 719 steam powered model Ds and one, outlined with electric lights, was suspended from the ceiling at the Cleveland Automobile Show in 1904. White gave out white carnations and hat pins shaped like the little 1904 White Model D to all female visitors to the show.
Eventually, White shifted over to gasoline-powered automobiles, as gas won the 'war' of popularity against both steam-powered and electric-powered cars. White then shifted to produce only trucks after World War I. After becoming one of America's biggest truckmakers, White went bankrupt in 1980.
This particular Model D, with a touring body and rear-entrance tonneau, could seat 4-5 passengers comfortably. The 1904 model Whites were longer and heavier than the earlier steam models and included such features as a foot-operated bulb horn, hickory spoked wooden wheels, and a double steering wheel which combines the steering wheel and the throttle. Properly operated, the car can attain a speed of 33 mph. The side wicker baskets were most likely to carry lap robes (to keep passengers warm), tools, picnic lunches, or other supplies. The 'radiator' on the front of the car is actually the condenser, which recycles the steam back into water, and back into the car's steam generator.Also photographed at :