Manufacturer:  American National Site of Operations: Toledo, Oh
Founder: Contact Information:
Parent Company Website:
Tricycles Made Since: 1927 Notable Lines/Models: Pioneer, Gendron, Toledo, Skippy, Streamline, Express
Still in Business: No – Sold in 141

American National was formed in 1925 as a holding company for Toledo Metal Wheel, National Wheel and American Wheel. In 1927, American National acquired Gendron Wheel Company and produced tricycles under the names of American-National, Toledo, Gendron, Pioneer, Skippy, Express, Reliance, Hi-Speed, Hi-Way, Speed King, Blue Streak, Sampson, American, and Streamline. Each company had their own products and catalogs.

In the late 1930’s, American-National had financial difficulties. In 1941, the assets and all rights to the product line were purchased by a group of Toledo industrialists headed by Walter H. Diemer. Previously, Mr. Diemer was the President of American-National. The new company was incorporated as the Gendron Wheel Company, Perrysburg, Ohio. The company was organized “to manufacture, import, export, buy, sell, and in general deal in wheelchairs, playground equipment, and other juvenile conveniences of every kind”.

All of American-National plants were closed except the Gendron Perrysburg plant. Due to the war effort, Gendron concentrated its efforts on wheelchairs and hospital stretchers. However, they continued to manufacture wooden wagons and playground equipment. Catalogs from the 1950”s and early 1960’s show playground equipment and hand car racers with the trade name Howdy Doody.

In 1959, Gendron Wheel moved most of its manufacturing to Archbold, Ohio. The Perrysburg plant was closed in 1963. In 1964, the company became a subsidiary of Howmedica, however the Gendron trademark continued. In 1971, Mr. Robert Diemer and Mr. Richard A. Bigelow purchased the company. It became Gendron-Diemer. In 1975, Richard A. Bigelow purchased Mr. Diemer’s interest and the company became Gendron, Inc.. In 1997, Mr. Bigelow sold the company to Steven W. Cotter, Thomas A. Dewire, and Frederic W. Strobel.

American National Catalog Pictures:
Click thumbnails for much larger images.

National No. 10, 11 tricycles from the 1931 catalog.

National catalog page from 1931 showing an American model trike.

Blue American
tricycle from 1931, page shows model numbers and sizes of each.

The Princeton
model tricycle in red from American National’s 1931 line with model numbers and
relative sizes.

The Boulevard
model tricycle in green from American National’s 1931 line with model numbers.

Tubular Velocipedes
models 19-300 and 19-320 from American National’s 1939 catalog.

Channel steel
framed model from American National’s 1939 catalog – model numbers.

1939 American
National Skippy model 19-330 (top) and American National model.

1939 Skippy
branded Spring Steel Health bike tricycle.

Skippy model
tubular velocipedes from 1939 catalog.

1939 American
National Skippy Health Bike with tandem seat attachment.

More tubular
trikes from American National’s 1939 line.

National Streamlined Pedal Bike from 1939, model number 19-714.

Tubular velocipede
tricycles from the 1930 American National catalog.

Pedal Bike model 19-710 from 1939.

Special thanks to Tricyclefetish reader Neal for providing
the nice scans of the American National 1931 and 1939 catalogs.

      You\’ll notice that most
of the tricycles do not have model names, merely numbers.  The Skippy models
are sometimes distinguishable by an embossed headbadge that reads “Skippy.”

Tomboy head badge.

National Indian Chief headbadge.

Tomboy rear step.

1930’s American National Tot 1930’s American National Tot 1930’s American National Tot American National tricycle type ride-on toy.

era American National fendered tricycle with tubular frame.

restored American National Tot tricycle.

original American National Tot trike.

National tot tricycle circa mid-1930’s with Streamlined Modern design lines.

Toledo Tomboy tricycle.

National “American” circa 19-teens-1920, transitional tube and
strap steel trike.

National Gendron trike circa late 1920’s.

National Indian Chief tricycle, circa 1930’s.










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