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1929 Hudson Super-Six Tow Car and a Curtiss Aerocar Trailer

The Todd School for Boys Hudson Tow Car and Curtiss Aerocar

We have to admit an attraction to most anything Glenn Curtiss designed or built. The lightweight Curtiss Aerocar Trailer built using aircraft constrution methods is high at the top of our list of his creations. The unit pictured above was used by the Todd School for Boys in Woodstock, Illinois. The trailer appears to be outfitted with bus-like seats judging by the number of boys visible inside. You can look back here at six other versions of the Curtiss Aerocar we have covered in the past. The photo is courtesy of the Woodstock Public Library.

  • 1929 Hudson Super-Six Engine
  •            The 1929 Hudson F-head Super-Six 288 c.i. 92 h.p. power plant – “Automotive Industries”.

In the pre-1930 period, the Aerocar is generally seen paired together with one of three of the popular mid-priced cars: Chrysler, Buick and Hudson coupes or roadsters apparently were the tow cars of choice at the time. Several photos have been seen of the Aerocar being pulled by a 1929 Hudson as is seen here.

One of the reasons may have been the powerful Hudson Super-Six 91 h.p. 288 c.i. F-head engine that was coupled to a smooth wet cork insert disc clutch. For 1929, Automotive Industries reported  it had an accelerator pump added to its carburetor, and changes in the manifolds and valve lift. With compression ratio raised to 6.0 to 1 it would sill run well on regular gasoline and had more low-speed torque and power.

1929 has been reported as the highest production year ever for Hudson when 77,000 units were built. Two chassis lengths were offered with 122.5 and 139-inch wheelbases. The standard bodies were by Briggs and coachwork was also available from both Murphy and Biddle and Smart. The illustration below is courtesy of the AACA Library.

1929 Hudson Super-Six Coupe

6 responses to “The Todd School for Boys Hudson Tow Car and Curtiss Aerocar

    • Yes they were, but not so overbuilt as Cadillac 353 V8’s which we in New Zealand used to make into buses. The one illustrated was built by my grandfather and I have owned it, along with the other four survivors of the 100+ that saw service here, for over 30 years. There was simply no other make or model of vehicle that could do the same job or we would have used them. Fully laden they often weighed in at over five tons and yet most of them went on to do well over a million miles and not much of that on sealed roads. ‘Standard of the World’? Oh yes, undoubtedly!

  1. A study of Hudson & related vehicles, is a study in excellence in automotive engineering & design. Do you know of any other earlier car that says: “Should the oil pump fail, then it is advised to reduce one’s speed to below 25 MPH, in order to drive the car to a repair station.” In just about any other design, oil pump failure means engine failure. Edwin.

  2. According to one source, the trailer had a name: Big Bertha. There was apparently more than one and they were outfitted for sleeping and with a kitchen. The school often took the students on extended cross country trips. The school also owned a summer camp in Michigan “Tosebo” and “Camp Todd” on Marathon Key, Florida used for a month long winter holiday. The photo is from 1930 or later because prior to that the school was known as the Todd Seminary for Boys (as well as other names).

    The school was in existence from 1848 – 1954. The school’s summer camp “Tosebo” still exists as a family vacation retreat. The building behind the trailer is Rogers Hall which is the only building left from the original campus.

    One famous graduate of the school was Orson Welles who attended from 1926 – 1931. After graduation he returned and filmed his first known film on campus – the surrealist pic The Hearts of Age which features his wife Virginia Nicolson and himself. His brother also attended the school, and his daughter Christopher attended from 1947 – 1949 (the only girl student).

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