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Four Fun Friday Fifties and Sixties Kodachrome Car Images

Number Ninety-eight of the Kodachrome Image Series begins this week with an image of four women, one with cat-eye sunglasses in a Chrysler Products Corporation convertible. The wild-looking orange color is either a repaint or more likely caused by the Kodachrome film.

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.

  • After a long cold and snowy winter this looks inviting, could this be Daytona Beach?

  • The college boys with their cars: an early-sixties Ford hardtop and a 1950s Studebaker coupe.

  • A forlorn-looking Nash sedan surrounded by litter in a big city environment.

34 responses to “Four Fun Friday Fifties and Sixties Kodachrome Car Images

  1. Thelma and Louise plus two. They must be sports to have a car painted orange, but they look ready for the beach in the middle of a farm field. College boys who like cars and two which would attract a look today. I walked past a bathtub Nash to and from school a long time ago, more faded than this one though.

  2. That old Nash looks forlorn due to some rough treatment, as well as the fact the styling engineers failed to step away and judge their work. Back in the day we used to call them ‘fish cars’ because the looked bloated and undefined.

  3. 1st pic shows mom’s can have fun too. 2nd, without question, Daytona. Been there many times. Very few beaches you can drive on, and I think Daytona is one of the last you can still do that. ( I think it will cost you $10 bucks/car) This is clearly low tide, and every afternoon, when the tide came, some poor schmuck, possibly passed out in an ocean front hotel room, only to come back to find their car up to the hubcaps in salt water. I think,there was a guy contracted by the city, and possibly still is, to just pull cars off the beach. It wasn’t cheap either.
    3rd pic, college boys, what, you think daddy sent them off to college in a rusty Falcon? That white car is pretty special. It’s a 1960 Ford Starliner. Quick story,,,in the late 80’s, while walking through a junkyard in S. Wis., a worker on a big forklift was stacking cars on a flatbed. He’d skewer the sides, pick them up, and crush the previous car. His next “victim” was a ’61 white 2 door Starliner, similar to this. No drivetrain, but a perfect body. He was just about to skewer the sides, when I yelled, “STOP”. He looked at me and said, “WHAT?” I said, “that’s a ’61 Starliner, don’t crush it”! He said, “look pal, you want it or don’t you”? I said, “well, I don’t but someone might”. He said,”no time”, and with that, put the forks through the doors,,,,I couldn’t watch.
    Last pic, the Nash sure was the “beater” in this bunch. I had a set of bumper guards like that Olds has on my Packard.

    • Definitely Daytona Beach since I lived in Ormond beach for 42 years. You can still drive on the beach if you pay a fee. Of course you can’t drive for 28 miles like you could in the 50’s, there are now some car free zones behind some of the big hotels. Also, whether it’s due to global warming or whatever the beach is so narrow it’s barely wide enough for 2 lanes of traffic and a place to park.

  4. It’s a shame the Studebaker isn’t a hardtop. Then, the picture would be of a Starliner and a Starliner. The Ford Starliner is a 1960. The Studebaker Starlight coupe is a 53 or 54.

  5. I would say that the orange paint was tractor paint, can see the top of the windshield overspray. My dad replaced 3 motors in a 53 Studebaker for my older brother, as I handed him the wrenches, he was not happy about the swap, butt loved us all. Nash is an upside-down bathtub, that my uncle had on the farm, ran forever.

  6. Hello everyone. A new person here.

    How about this theory. Behind the Nash is a 1949 or 1950 Oldsmobile police car.
    Spot light on the side.
    Extra lights in the grille.
    Tall verticals on the front bumper, bent back from pushing cars.

    • Hi Mike, welcome aboard. ( wait, shouldn’t David be saying that?) I can’t find any ’50 Oldsmobiles as police cars, although, I’m sure there were. The spotlight was a popular accessory back then, and upon closer inspection, the guards didn’t do a very good job. They’re dented, bent back, like you say, and the left fog light is broke. I suppose they DID protect the grill, as intended. Look, the Nash back bumper is bent too,,,hmm, I wonder,,,

      • Anyone old enough to remember being at a drive-in theater before the movies began and seeing cars’ spotlights “playing tag” on the blank movie screen?

        • Oh yeah! Had twin spots on my ’39 Ford, we could both play!

          Once the movie started though we had more interesting things to do – and it wasn’t watching the movie!

          Life was good when I was 16! It’s even better now, 56 years later!

  7. In the 2nd photograph, center, just left of the “FLOATS” sign, is a four-door, green with white roof, 1951 BUICK, either a Roadmaster or Super.

      • Chris,

        Thanks for the question.

        At first the car looked a lot like my father’s green with white roof, four-door, ’52 BUICK Special. Enlarged the photograph 5 times and noticed that behind the rear door there is a little triangle window. On the four-door ’51 and ’52 Roadmasters and Supers were these type of windows. Also the car appears not to have the small chromed rear fender extensions [used on ’52 BUICKS]. The rear doors of the 1951 and ’52 BUICK Specials had a small window built into the back of their rear doors.

        Hope this helps you. By the way, when enlarging the picture it became fuzzy, so I my be wrong !!!


  8. I’m pretty sure the top pic shows a 1946 tot early 1949 DODGE. The only clue is the front fender trim. On a DeSoto in ran further back to the front door; on a Chrysler, length was about the same but placed right on top op the wheel opening (no sheet metal visible between the wheel well and the trim, as is the case here).

  9. Don’t remember that color on the Mopar convertible… Has to be a postwar Dodge- couldn’t be any of the other 6 cylinders, process of elimination! The Plymouth had fenders that stopped before the door began and Chrysler never had hood trim that reached to the front of the car also DeSoto trim had no rib/grove anywhere and the front quarter molding reached back to the fender rear edge. The Girls sure had Pepsodent smiles!

    Next foto… Any spring/summer weekend- lots of GM fastbacks- had forgotten they had that large a market share.

    3rd foto…Doesn’t the Studebaker Starliner coupe have Oldsmobile “flippers’ , 57 maybe?

    Last foto… unusual that I could recognise all the cars and years except the 2 furthest away in the foto, also amazing that the ’49 Olds and the “49-’50 Nash Airflyite could be exactly the same vintage… they are so very different.

    • That style Oldsmobile wheel cover is from 1956 only. They were also available aftermarket in auto stores although the quality was generally poor compared to factory GM covers. Either way the added red color was added by the Studebaker owner.

  10. That top picture Dodge is either a ’48 or early ’49 due to the 15 in. wheels.
    I had a ’48 sedan many moon ago, and that fluid drive I think, was one of the slowest cars in the world !!
    As “Uncle” Tom Macahill used to say the gas feed was like stepping on a mashed potato !!

    • Brian,.. Love the “mashed potato “bit… “UncleTom” was a trip. Me, I remember … The Smoothest Car “Afloat”….what a “slow boat” it was!

    • Love that reference to “Uncle Tom” McCahill.
      My favorite quote from him, test driving a Late 40’s Buick, was “That car goes around a corner like a rhinoceros on a wet clay bank.”

  11. 3rd pic: Nash is so ‘ugly’ it becomes beautiful! Other noteworthy cars: a 1957 Oldsmobile across the street is the newest car here… Way back in the other street I see a 1953-54 Studebaker coupé being ‘sandwiched’ between two big 1956 Chrysler New Yorkers!

  12. Last photo
    Top left – ’51 Chevy.
    Parked in the back row – ’56 Chrysler.
    Post Office Department mail drop box – ’55-’70.

  13. My internet research says that the orange convertible in pic. 1 is definitely a 1947 or 1948 Dodge Custom, with the minimalist hubcaps normally furnished on basic models. Can’t find a chart of available colors, but it seems unlikely that the orange was a factory color. Still a fun car.

  14. Regarding the orange color on the car in the first pic. If it was a repaint, looks like the door jams and A pilar were also done. The ladies skin tone also has an orange hue. My bet is that its the color of the pic that has the orange, not the car.
    As always, another friday made better again with the help of this site. Thanks again David.

  15. Kodachrome was likely the most stable of all color reversal films owing in a large part to its hideously complex developing process. (Said process also being its biggest drawback since it could only be developed at a few stations across the US.) Other “slide films” of less complexity, when they did fade, generally went in the opposite, purplish direction, Anscochrome most notably. So, if it is indeed a Kodachrome image, it’s probably accurate. Additionally, when other films did change to a certain color it was a result of the other colors fading, leaving only the one to predominate, resulting in a faded look overall, not evident here.

    Also, the skin tones of the gals in the Dodge still seem quite natural despite being in the same color range, so I’m inclined to believe that really is an orange Dodge. Given the agricultural setting, perhaps the driver’s husband/father is an Aliis Chalmers dealer?

  16. Anyone here remember the High Performance 1960 Ford Starliner? It was featured in a Hot Rod Magazine article and spurred a friend to order one. It was a fast and beautiful car. One of the most attractive Fords built.

    The Nash just keeps looking better and better as time goes by. I guess it was that much ahead of its time.


  17. The Olds Fiesta wheel covers were the ones to have. The Studebaker Starlight owner has achieved instant coolness with his.


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