A History of the Douglas Motors Corporation Factory in North Omaha

Douglas Motors Corporation, N. 30th and Taylor Streets, North Omaha Nebraska

North Omaha has hosted large and small industry throughout its history, starting in the 1860s and extending to this day. One of the major manufacturers that has called North Omaha home was the Douglas Motors Corporation.  

In 1918, the Douglas Motors plant opened at 4024 North 30th Street, near the Druid Hill School. Originally known as the Drumond Motor Car Company, the company was founded in Omaha in 1917.

Douglas Motor Company touring car, Omaha, Nebraska
This is a 1917 Douglas Motor Company touring car, which sat 7 people. After this, the company started making trucks in North Omaha.

Drummond built cars for touring and roadsters, as well as a town car. However, they were only built for a year.

Douglas Trucks, 4025 North 30th Street, North Omaha, Nebraska
This is a 1920s pic of workers at the Douglas Truck Company in North Omaha, Nebraska. Their factory was at 4025 North 30th Street.

In 1918, the company name was changed to the Douglas Motors Corporation. They built a new plant in North Omaha where the Douglas V-8 was made, along with some commercial trucks, and continued manufacturing trucks there until the mid 1930s. The company was closed during the Great Depression.

Douglas Motor Company Plant North Omaha Nebraska
This a 1914 architectural drawing for the Douglas Motor Company Plant in North Omaha.

The Exide Corporation, which manufactures batteries, operated here in the 1990s. After their building was designated a part of the Omaha Superfund cleanup site, Exide moved to southwest Omaha. After the plant was demolished and remediation on the site was completed, the Omaha Police Department built a new substation at the location.    


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BONUS PICS!

Douglas Manufacturing Company, North 30th Street, North Omaha, Nebraska
This is a postcard for the Omaha-based Douglas Manufacturing Company located on North 30th Street. Image courtesy of Jody Lovallo.
A 1927 ad from the Omaha World-Herald congratulates the Douglas Truck Manufacturing Company for building its new factory.
A 1927 ad from the Omaha World-Herald congratulates the Douglas Truck Manufacturing Company for building its new factory.
This 1920s image shows a Douglas Truck outside of the Douglas Motors Corporation factory on North 30th Street in North Omaha, Nebraska.
This 1920s image shows a Douglas Truck outside of the Douglas Motors Corporation factory on North 30th Street.
Douglas Trucks, North Omaha, Nebraska
A 1920 ad from an industry journal recommends Douglas Trucks in “all lines of business.”

Published by Adam Fletcher

An internationally recognized expert in youth engagement, Adam leads the Freechild Institute and SoundOut. He is also the editor NorthOmahaHistory.com; the author of Student Voice Revolution and twelve other books; and the host of the North Omaha History Podcast.

6 thoughts on “A History of the Douglas Motors Corporation Factory in North Omaha

  1. Greetings Adam, is there a list of workers at the Douglas truck factory in 1918? Or a lust of who purchased the first trucks built by the factory? My grandmothers diary reads my grandfather Edgar Wenquist “had” one of the first trucks in Omaha, then died in 1920 there Is there a way to verify? They arrived in Douglas County around 1884-85; and the Hayduks there after Edgar died. Thank you Denice Hayduk Wenquist Santa Barbara Ca

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Denice, and thanks for writing! I have no idea where that kind of info ever ends up, but I really doubt it exists anywhere. The Nebraska State Historical Society has some old company records for businesses throughout the state’s history, but I don’t know whether they have any from the Douglas Motors Corp.

      Good luck in your search! Have any pics? I’d love to see!

      -Adam

      Like

  2. Hi there. My grandpa purchased a 1932 Douglas truck in 1932. It is #1 of only 5 made. It is on display at the Durham Museum in Omaha. There is a picture of it at the beginning of this page, except they printed it incorrectly. It says it is a 1918 Douglas truck. Well I guess that is wrong..haha, since they never made it until 1932. The company started making trucks in 1918 until the late 1930’s. My grandpa’s name was Emil Knudsen. My uncle Don refurbished the whole truck as you see it now. Where can I find more information on the value of this truck? As far as I know there are only 2 maybe 3 in existence. Thanks in advance. You could email me if you’d like. cruzfan@gpcom.net Linda

    Liked by 1 person

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