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Chicken Dinner Candy delivery truck

Five Fun Fifties and Sixties Friday Kodachrome Images

Number thirteen in the Fun, Friday Kodachrome Image series, starts out with the lead photo showing a “Chicken Dinner” Candy delivery truck. The candy bar was first introduced by the Sperry Candy Company of Milwaukee, WI in 1923. The moniker was chosen by the confectioner that explained it at the time as “A name which suggests the best of something good to eat, and known to every child.” At the time a chicken dinner was considered to be a very good meal. When it was first introduced it cost 10 cents, which was the high end at the time for a candy bar – the price was later reduced to 5 cents.

The delivery trucks first originated in the twenties and were outfitted with specially built chicken like bodies that children could easily identify with. The entire fleet over the years was based on pickup and light truck chassis’. This Ford was part of the mid-1950s fleet.

For the other four images (below) we will list a few details about each one and as is normal practice with this series, ask our readers to tell us the exact year, make and model of all of these cars. You can look back on all the earlier parts of this series here. The photos are via Americar.

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  •       A study in contrasts – A new looking Mercury and an older Chrysler Corporation product in Ohio.

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  •            The return of the Hat Ladies in a Studebaker Hawk – Which of the three Hawk models is it?

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  •                Chevrolet station wagon all packed and ready to go on the “Great American Road Trip.”

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  •           The sign says “I’m the Guy that said it would never happen” on a Ford sedan at his wedding.

16 responses to “Five Fun Fifties and Sixties Friday Kodachrome Images

  1. ’56 Merc with ~’51 Plymouth in the first one, ’60 Chev in #3, and a ’49 (all chrome deck lift vs. partly painted for ’50) Ford in the last one.

  2. I’m going to say the car in front is a 1950 Ford. Underneath the cardboard sign you can see the bottom of the Ford crest, which was new for 1950.

    I would also guess that car is part of the wedding party as well, as it has a similar sign on the decklid.

    Also notice the very smart woman in the blue “new look” dress.

    • The wedding car has to be a 49 Ford. 49’s had door handles that pulled straight out to open, like these. 50 and 51 had handles with push buttons below them.

  3. The wedding party in the last picture is not paying any attention to what looks like a Chicago Transit Authority (formerly Chicago Surface Lines) streetcar. The low door and door features look like a 1929 Peter Witt car, but I’m not positive.

  4. I’ll guess the Studebaker Hawk is the Golden model? Notice that the Chevy wagon has rear window defectors mounted on the rear roof pillars. We added these to our ’63 Chevy wagon to keep the dust from being sucked into the open rear window. They worked very well.

    • The Studebaker is not a Golden Hawk, Golden Hawks were all hard top (pillarless). The alternate model would be Silver Hawk if it’s a ’57, ’58 or ’59. It looks like later model wheel covers, which would make it a ’60 or ’61. In those later years there was only one model of Hawk, so they were simply called Hawks, no Golden or Silver prefix. A true Studebaker fan (more so than I) could differentiate the model years by subtle trim, signal light and grill variations.

  5. OK, I’ll be the flour ball in the gravy here, and say the Merc is a ’55. I believe the Studey is a Silver Hawk, and note in the photo of the Fords there is a ’49 Plymouth across the street. The “chicken truck” is possibly a ’52 or ’53.

    • The Mercury is a ’56; the trunk lid emblem is a dead giveaway. I believe the Studebaker Hawk is a ’60 or ’61, based on the grill texture, but am not certain.

      • After further searching, the Hawk appears to be either a ’59 or ’60; the chrome on the tail fins on the ’61s is different than that on the car pictured.

  6. The Studebaker is a 1959 Silver Hawk which was the only Hawk model available that year. The movement of the parking lights this year from the top of the fenders to below the headlights gave a much cleaner look to the front end.

    The photo also shows a 1959 Illinois Dealer license plate. This was the first year that the slogan “Land of Lincoln” appeared on the dealer plates although the phrase began to appear on most Illinois license plates starting in 1954.

  7. Posted for Rob Linden – It can’t be a ’52. It is a ’53, ’54, or ’55, but not a ’56 as those had wrap-around windshields. The grille should identify it specifically, but I’m most familiar with the ’57–’61 Ford pickups and only fair with the earlier ones.

  8. Pretty sure, the Ford “chicken candy bar” truck is a ’54. Being from Milwaukee, I don’t remember the chicken dinner candy bar, although, it may be a tad before my time. Sounds like a dumb name for a candy bar. I DO remember a fast food chicken place, called “Champion Chicken”, that, must have bought the trucks from Sperry ( apparently bought out by Pearson’s ( of Nut Roll fame) in 1962, because, I distinctly remember those chicken trucks driving around Milwaukee in the early 60’s, delivering chicken dinners. The new Mercury could be one of our moms, in Suburbia Anytown, USA. My parents house , when new in Milwaukee looked just like that.
    Not a huge Studerbaker fan, but this was the coolest model made. The Chevy wagon, again, Anytown, USA, America was on the move, and I don’t know, Ace, Milwaukee had buses those colors, and could be someone from ILL. visiting . Lots of weddings after WW2. Thanks for the pics.

    • My Grandfather was Sperry’s chief candy maker and I am told by my mother that he was the inventor or creator of this bar. The owner, Mr. Sperry, started out as a ” restauranteer” and named some of his products after restaurant specialties, thus they had the Chicken Dinner bar, the Denver Sandwich bar and another called the Cold Turkey. The names of his candy bars may be questionable but his style of advertising was truly innovative. Had they been located in NYC they may well have given Hershey a run for its money!

    • Yes, the chicken truck is a 54 f250. Champion chicken has one (put the chicken on a new truck). Captain Bobs chicken had one for a while, and I have one of them. Of the 9 built I only know of these 3.

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