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Five Fun 1950s, and 1960s Friday Kodachrome Car Images

Number sixty of the “Kodachrome Image Series” begins with a late night or early morning view of a Hody’s Coffee Shop. This establishment was located in North Hollywood, CA, on Lankershim Blvd. and was a part of a chain of at least eight eateries in the Los Angeles area. This view could almost qualify for a two or three o’clock in the morning scene in the movie “American Graffiti.”

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 Americar.

Mid-1960s Ford and Travel Trailer Union 76

  • Here we see a mid-1960s Ford and a travel trailer at a Union 76 gasoline station offering 76 Auto Care “a certified service,” “Union” branded tires, and a large spark plug trade sign.

1950s Ford and VW Beatle

  • This 1959 image taken in Oregon offers a side-by-side study of a VW, the most popular 1950s import and a Ford sedan with a large screen bug deflector of the type popular at the time.

Your Grandfathers Oldsmobile - Early 1950s

  • This actually could be your grandfather’s Oldsmobile. Note the yellow hood ornament that was marketed as a windshield bug deflector and the fender skirts painted the same color as the top.
  • .
  • This rig at boat launch and the appearance of the body of water and the background may place this scene on the Connecticut River. Note the rust out on the Ford’s rocker panel.

Early-1960s Ford Sedan

29 responses to “Five Fun 1950s, and 1960s Friday Kodachrome Car Images

  1. My dad had three 1960 Fords at once. A red and white sedan, a yellow and white Starliner 2 door HT, and a Country Squire. All were terrible rust buckets worse than the pictured Galaxie! Of course we were in Minnesota, land of salted roads.

  2. Down the back at Hody’s, the real thing and a wannabe: a ’56 Continental next to what might be a Packard with “tail feathers.”

  3. I also grew up in Minnesota (and now live there again). My first car was a ’62 Fairlane and it was completely rusted out in both the front and rear fender wells. The trunk interior was covered in mud kicked up by the rear tires.

    • Reinans! My grandparents had a 60 Ford coupe up at the family cottage in Michigan. It was the low model. Three speed on the tree. The door panels waved and made noise when we drove to the store.

  4. The restaurant scene, could be anywhere, although, not many coffee shops in the Mid-west had Continental’s out front. 2nd, could be our family. We had the same setup. Looks like dad is getting “hi-test” for that big 352 4V ( or bigger) in the ’66 Ford, while the Lancer probably getting regular. The bug has to be a ’57 or older. In ’58, they moved the turn signals to the top of the fender. My grandfather had a ’48 Packard through out the ’50’s, but he was a cigar smoker. The Olds appears to be a ’53, 88, with a ’53 Minnesota plate. Looks a little rough for a new car. The Ford and boat picture is probably 1961, as these 1960 Ford’s had rust from the factory. Does anybody recognize the boat?

  5. I had a couple of ’60 Fords also and my very first car was a Fairlane 500 with a 292 v8 3-speed stick. Went fast when the valves were set properly but most of the time was a clattering pig. But, that body style was a winner in my book!

  6. I think that the vehicle next to the Continental at Hody’s is an owner-“customized” ’52 Ford Victoria, with some extra chrome on the rear quarter, right above the factory stone guard, as well as a continental kit. There’s also a ’61 Bonneville ragtop adjacent to a “57 Olds (Super) 88. Might that be a red Corvair, to the left of the Continental?

    • Tom, I think you’re “spot on” about the Ford “Vicky”… surprised some one hasn’t tagged Hody’s- wherever it was or is – it ‘s quite an establishment for the time. Must be some metro area (southern California) to support it… would take a sizeable staff to run , as it appears. Think it’s after midnite or post closing time and everyone else is home or in bed, bet it would be hard to find a parking spot during the day.

      About the white and blue ’53 Olds Super 88, while the Super 88 had stock fender skirts, I never recall them being other than the same body color… the Deluxe 88 had an open wheel w/ a lip around it and different rear quarter trim, unusual???

      The other “unusual” thing about 1953 GM cars was… that during the model run GM had a fire that disabled the Hydramatic factory for about 2-3 months… as a consequence, during that down time Pontiacs if ordered w/ an automatic transmission received Powerglide units and Oldsmobiles and Cadillacs recieved Dynaflow units. Some buyers and owners of Olds and Cadillacs were not pleased as performance suffered in those cars… they were not as “spirited” as they were expected to be… they were promoted and advertised to be otherwise very “quick”off the line. In many cases those cars ended up being heavily discounted to move them. I had a banker Uncle who drove big Oldsmobiles and was so motivated that he picked up a loaded 98 sedan which he enjoyed and then my Aunt drove for several years. He did NOT have a heavy foot.

  7. Looks like most are pegged in these photos. The ’66 Ford wagon does, as Howard indicated, have a 352. The standard 8 had no marking on the lower fender and the 390s had red slashes, while the 352 had blue.

    In the 1959 Oregon photo, the gal on the left is dressed for the year, with pink pedal pushers, while the lass at right was resplendent in apron.

    Sorry, Howard, I don’t recognize the boat, but it’s a nice one.

    • Hi Larry, thanks, that was kind of a shot in the dark. My old man had a few Ford wagons to pull our campers, and I remember that badge, but don’t remember the colors. Apparently, the seldom seen “428” had red flags as well.

      • I don’t think there was a Ford 428 until much later. The next biggie after the 390 (with tri-power for a while) was the 406 and then the 427 in 63 1/2 I think, when the semi-fastbacks came out.

  8. Plastic bug deflectors like the one on the Olds were almost O.E. in the the midwest in the fifties. They came in all different colors and were just about effective as deer whistles of a later era. I think this couple were on a vacation out west in their new car and it was obviously cool out, hence the jackets and the grim on the car would be from the road and the dirt kicked up. Seldom got washed till you got back from vacation as car washes were few and far between. Notice their granddaughter? in the back seat. He’s taking a smoke break and getting some pictures, wonder if the person taking the picture was with them.

  9. As always a treat. My two cents, for what it’s worth. (Two cents?)

    1) Any place looks better with a Continental Mark II in front. Hody’s is quite the Googie-looking place. Very modern.

    2) To the left of the Continental looks like a Corvair Monza coupe and perhaps a 61Thunderbird. The Pontiac is a 61 and the Olds a 57.

    3) Nice to see the County Sedan with blackwalls and dog-dish caps.

    4) It looks like they get bugs in Oregon. And, it looks like no one got around to making them for VWs.

    5) A little harder to see, but the 60 Galaxie has a white roof. I seem to remember those being pretty common at the time. My dad drove a 60 Galaxie 4 dr hardtop in Rangoon Red with a Wimbledon White top roof panel. Black interior. That car was the first time I became aware of power steering (age 6 at the time). I watched Dad turn the steering lock-to-lock with one finger. I was amazed.

    Thanks to you again and again and again.

    • While I agree it appears to be a red Corvair coupe, it’s nearly impossible to tell what model, not nearly enough detail in that image to tell.

      But the paint does look to be Honduras Red, which would place it as a ’61 or ’62, since those were to two years that color was offered.

      I owned a ’61 Corvair 700 coupe in that color, paid $30- for it in ’71.

    • Chris… I’m in Florida, I’ve missed Hody’s and the big pre-Ronald type clown in my travels around the US. Where is /are it/they?

      • Googled it …found the foto- Lankershim Blvd in No Hollywood! Hody’s was a local chain of 10 mobile friendly food establishments around LA County, mid 20th century. Very popular- another location foto showed the above referenced Hody’s Clown- sure could’ve been inspiration for Ronald. Huge, yes… scary- maybe!

  10. The VW is a ’56 or ’57: you can see the oval rear window and the turn signals haven’t been moved to the tops of the fenders (good eye Howard). The bumper over riders were added to VWs in ’56.

  11. In the Hody’s pic, the half a car at the very right appears to be taking advantage of their “Car Service” judging by the tray attached to its door. No sign of the car hop tho, but I assume that’s what the little window to the right of the door is for. Nowadays the Car Service tray has moved and resides on the console between the two front seats.

  12. in the last picture it looks like the boater is already sunburnt, better wear a t-shirt! had a friend with a similar boat, can’t remember the brand but, it had a Chrysler 40hp outboard.

  13. My first car was a 1960 Ford that I promptly wrecked a couple of months after getting my license. I then purchased a 1961 Ford for $75 (this was in 1968 and that wasn’t much money for a car even then). One of my father’s co-workers had an auto repair business as a sideline; he swapped in the 223 CID six and Fordomatic from the ’60 Ford into the 1961. He also used about 20 pounds of Bondo trying to fix the rusted rear fenders on the ’61. Mr. Keach did get the holes patched enough to paint over but as soon as the weather turned cold the Bondo started to crack. I drove Old Blue through my senior year in high school; it wasn’t much of a car but it beat not having a car at all.

  14. Regarding the picture of the Oldsmobile with the man and woman standing at the right front fender. The man is holding something in his right hand which appears to have a red rubber hose connecting it to the right front tire. Might this be a hand held tire inflator powered by an electrical cord plugged into the cigarette lighter?

    • Hi Al, it appears he’s holding a camera. I’d be interested what brand cigar he’s smoking. My grandfather smoked Antonio and Cleopatra Panatela’s.

      • I think you’re right Howard. That “red rubber hose” is probably the neck strap for the camera. It just “appears” to be connected to the tire.

  15. That runabout on the trailer at the boat launch looks like a Chris * Craft to me. Very pretty boat! At the summer cottage in northern MI, we keep a ’65 Glassmaster (weather-worn, faded red deck) with a Johnson 70 Seahorse motor that still gets a lot of attention for retro and nostalgia. My son towed it to Maryland and had his best friend (and marine mechanic) overhaul the engine last year. They had it tuned fine and turned a lot of heads down on The Bay – very distinctive sound those old motors put out. Thanks for posting these cool pix !!!

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