Blue Bird Body Company
The Blue Bird Body Company was established in 1932 in Fort Valley, Georgia, but started a few years earlier, in the Perry, Georgia Ford Dealership, where Albert Luce sold a Ford T with a wooden bus body to a customer in 1925. Unfortunately the bus wasn’t built for the rural roads in Georgia, so it quickly began to rattle apart, before the customer had finished paying for it in installments.
Albert took a thorough look at the bus, and came to the conclusion that he could do a better job, and that a wooden frame wasn’t a viable solution.
In 1927, he had built the first bus, using a steel frame, covered with a steel skin. Wood was only used for non bearing parts, like seats and panels.
This first bus was used as a school bus, and has survived until today, where it can be seen in the Henry Ford Museum, in Michigan.
The new steel bodied buses were a big success and he began building them at his dealership in Fort Valley.
Even today, large yellow school buses are the product the Blue Bird Company is best known for.