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Four Fun Friday Kodachrome Car Photographs No. 228

Due to a website glitch that happened while editing this morning’s installment of the Friday feature we lost all of its data and photos. But “the show must go on” so four of the most popular early (2015) lead images and descriptions were chosen from the series for this week’s feature.

“For number Thirty-Six we begin out with an image of a convenience store. The “Positively 7-11 Parking Only” sign above the VW points to this being a 7-11 store. The architecture looks similar to that used by the chain at the time, but we are going to let our visitors weigh in on the subject.”

As is the usual practice in this series, we ask our readers to tell us the year, make, and model of all of these vehicles along with anything else of interest in the photos. You can look back on all the earlier parts of this series here. The photos are via This Was Americar.

1953 Studebaker Coupe

“Number Seventeen in the series begins with the lead photo containing a 1953 Studebaker coupe in the water after launching a boat. Tell us if you think the car driver went into the water too far for the launch, or if it was necessary, and why is he sitting in the middle of the seat?”

46 responses to “Four Fun Friday Kodachrome Car Photographs No. 228

      • MP,

        Thanks for the question.

        Enlarged the lead picture and the car you refer to appears to be a four-door [rear door handle seen just above ’61 Impala’s trunk] and the front vent window looks like it comes to a point, which would rule out a STUDEBAKER Gran Turismo Hawk. If hadn’t enlarged the photograph, would have gone with you that the car was a Gran Turismo Hawk, but a ’62.

        Don’t have an idea what the car is.


  1. In the 2nd picture the ’53 STUDEBAKER looks like a Commander Regal Starlight Coupé with a V8 engine. Don’t know if the driver went too far in the water, but hope it’s not salt water !!

  2. Nice 1951 Ford convertible. The 1953 Studebaker looks like this wasn’t the first time it was backed into the water. Probably water up to the transmission hump.

  3. Driver of the dump forgot to release the tailgate before elevating the dump bed. You can see the release cord hanging from the upper (front) end of the body and the tailgate still closed. As gravel slid back, it could not get out and piled up behind the rear axle, seesawing the cab into the air.
    Always enjoy the Fabulous Four Fun Friday Fotos!

  4. Yeah, having lost a comment or 2 to cyberspace, it’s a fragile deal. I remember all these, but fun to see again. 1st pic is not an ice cream shop, it’s a 7-11 store. ( the VW plate would tell where) 7-11’s I think were one of the 1st convenience stores in the country. This open door thing indicates a southern location, and that guy ain’t got ice cream in that brown paper bag. 2nd, as long as your feet don’t get wet and keep the air cleaner above water, good to go. I think, the car began to roll in, and the guy slid over and hit the brake. Neat boat, the motor is a Mercury, but can anyone ID the boat? 3rd pic, is a ’58-60 Chevy Spartan 100 and pretty obvious , to me, the guy never tripped the gate. You see the handle on the box corner still latched. I’m sure the guy got quite a ribbing after that, and it’s not as dire as it looks. Simply lowering the box , SLOWLY, will lower the truck, usually goes unnoticed, but some clown, perhaps the boss, just happened to have a camera with them. The red roller looks like an Austin Western. And last, I think we surmised, this is a brother from California visiting with his fancy new Ford convertible. Wisconsin rarely had convertibles.

    • The brother from California is likely the man on the right; no overcoat and no gloves would be a tell-tale clue. That’s a very nice ’51 Ford Custom Deluxe convertible.

      • Hi Daniel, funny, I thought just the opposite. The guy on the right, was the local boy. The guy on the left, from California, is freezing.

  5. As for the Chevy dump truck dilemma, did the hoist cylinder for the box come loose? Nothing I can see holding the front of the box, so the weight of the gravel pulled the front end up off the ground.

  6. The Studebaker in the second photo is among the classiest looking American cars, before or since. The horrid fins and Mercedes-copy grill that got tacked onto it for the Hawks were abominations.

  7. Always unlatch gate before raising box. I wonder if he tryed to lower the box, the truck would stand straight up? Probably a dent in the cab roof also.

    • Hi Mike, that’s true except for spreading. That’s what the rope on the tailgate handle is for. You’d set the chains on the tailgate so it only opened a couple inches. You raise the box until the material slid to the back, let the clutch out and then pull the rope, raising the box as you go. I don’t think that’s what this guy was trying to do.

  8. Perhaps the Studebaker already had a rusted floor, and if it was below the waterline, was squirting upwards uncomfortably on the drivers’ pants leg? Maybe the tide came in, though if this were tidal and this salt water, that car was doomed already.

    As for the truck doing a wheelie, I think they were using it as a payloader to push the gravel into a larger pile, and the torque just lifted up the lightened front end?

    I think the Badgers fans might be GI Bill students, based on their apparent ages, just happy to celebrate football and life.

    Sorry about the data loss, and thanks for the flashbacks!

  9. I worked on the building of a major highway in my area back in the late ’60’s as a surveyors helper.

    When dump trucks came along with a load of gravel to put on the road, they would raise the bucket of the truck without releasing the back to deposit it on the road, until the front of the truck was up in the air, like the one in the third picture above.

    Then they would release the switch in the cab and the gravel would come pouring out and the front of the truck much to their “jollies” would come crashing down!

  10. As a guess the guy in the Studebaker is sitting in the middle so he can keep his feet on the transmission hump and avoid the water in the foot wells while he waits for his buddies to secure the boat and come to his rescue. Could be that the boat ramp slab drops off abruptly and the car’s rear wheels have gone over the edge. Been there – done that! And if his feet had already become soaked perhaps we’d be seeing a picture of him standing in the water washing that dirty Studebaker.

  11. The tipped truck is badged as belonging to Dual Mixed Concrete. Dual Mixed Concrete was one of James Franceschini’s companies. He was a 15-year-old Italian immigrant to Canada in 1906 who founded his first excavation company in 1912 (Franceschini Construction, renamed Dufferin in the 1920s for the road his first shop was located on) and was doing grading work for the CNR by 1919. He started Dual Mixed Concrete when local concrete companies went on strike in the 1930s. He was interned at a Canadian concentration camp for Italians at Petawawa during World War 2. After the war, he continued operating the company until 1958, when he retired at 77, passing away two years later. His son sold all of their companies to St. Lawrence Cement in 1961, and they were all rebranded under the Dufferin name in 1965. The company still exists as a division of CRH Canada.

    • Steve:

      I’m guessing you are from the Toronto area. My family was involved in the aggregate business there for years. I went to school with whom I would imagine were the granddaughters, perhaps great granddaughters of Mr. Franceschini. They had a sand and gravel pit on Mississauga Road close to my house, part of a large deposit placed by the present day Credit River when water levels of Lake Ontario were much higher as the last ice sheets were melting and receding, into what was called Lake Iroquois then, enough Pleistocene geology! A well known name for people from the days gone by, I didn’t know about the earlier history of Mr. Franceschini. I’m sure my father does. And he got his start in trucking from a cement strike in I believe 1948. He was 15, bought a dually 5T(?) Ford tractor with a trailer and hauled cement from Buffalo to Toronto, pulling his weight since 1948 as he puts it! I’ll have to ask him, maybe one trip a day back then!


  12. Photo #2: No question the car was backed in too far. Looks like the trailer tires gave the trailer buoyancy (notice the trailer is floating behind the car with the boat off.) and they had difficulty getting the boat off as the trailer was floating up under the boat. I have no idea why the driver is sitting in the middle of the seat.

  13. In the 3rd picture, in the background [beyond the dump-truck’s passenger front tire], is what looks like a white 1955 MONARCH or 1955 MERCURY.

  14. He should never have had to back the Studebaker in far enough to get water in the trunk, much less in the passenger compartment for two reasons: The one mentioned above that the ramp might drop off suddenly and the second that some ramps are so slippery with algae and slime that there’s not enough traction to stop and pull out with rear wheel drive only. Odd thing about the picture is that the trailer is level, not sunk along the same incline. The trailer should sink and the boat float off before going in nearly that far. Driver seems so relaxed. He won’t be when he realizes the hard way that the rear differential vent allowed it to fill with water.

  15. I think the Studebaker backed in that far in order to get the boat to float off the trailer. I’ve spent many a summer weekend at the lake with water in my taillights.

  16. I think the Stude has Michigan plates on it. If I remember correctly their slogan was “Water Wonderland”. If the Stude could have talked he / she would have agreed with that as part of the interior was slowly submerged.

  17. David,
    Sorry to read about your web issues, but I really appreciate your “lemonade from lemons” Plan B.
    I’m sure I’m not alone in seeing human facial features in the front grille/headlights/bumper arrangements on some cars & trucks. Since I was little, I always thought the front end of that ’53 Studebaker in Photo 3 reminded me of a dapper gentleman from the 50’s with a pencil-thin moustache (ironically, Raymond Lowy’s design here kinda looked to me like Raymond himself, no?)
    Anyone else ??

    • Hi Kevin, I sure do. Many cars grills of that era looked like faces. The ’48 Lincoln front looked like the guy with the billiard balls in his mouth, of course any Buick with the toothy grill, and I always thought canted headlights had an Asian flair. And no angry person would ever drive an A-H Sprite.

  18. The first 7-11 I ever saw was in Alexandria, Virginia in the early ’60s when we visited relatives there. There was nothing like that in Connecticut in those days, but It must have been immediately after that when 7-11s appeared everywhere.

    • Hi Eric, not much has been said about 7-11’s, but at the time, it was a novel idea, and the grand daddy of the convenience store. In the 50’s , grocery store hours were pretty much 9-5, no Sundays, 7-11 came along, open until 11pm , some open 24 hours, was simply unheard of. Many cities had laws about the hours. We had a 7-11 in Milwaukee, as a kid, it seemed so odd for mom to buy groceries at 9:30 at night on the way home from grandmas, not to mention booze, which I’m sure this young man has purchased , at night, previously, only could do that from a bar.

  19. My grandmother had a ’60 Impala. As a young tike, I remember standing and holding onto the front seat as we sped to the ol’ swimming hole (about 15 miles east of James Whitcomb Riley’s original ol’ swimmin’ hole). Until I saw the ’61 today, I did not recall the fairly significant redesign of the Impala (especially the loss of the rear fins).

  20. OK, the really tough one in this series hasn’t been mentioned yet.

    Look at the first photo, the one outside the 7-11. In the foreground is a light blue convertible. Note the snaps around the top front of the rear panel for the converible top boot when lowered.

    What is that car? I’ve got no guesses offhand.

    • Great question Bob. Looks like a tiny bit of chrome sticking up in the rear corner. Only thing that comes to mind is a Chrysler but not sure the fender profile is right. Other ideas?

  21. First pic- Robert Hall looks like he has at least 2 boxes of the ice cream bars. Probably going back to the dealership, with a peace offering, since he missed his sales goal this week. Are those Texas tags?

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