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Parking Lot Series: Galilee State Park Narragansett, Rhode Island

Today’s Parking Lot Series image takes us to a lot in Galilee State Park located in the Village of Galilee in the southern most part of Narragansett, Rhode Island, which is located on the Bay named after the town. The near by Sand Hill Cove Beach has been re-named the Salty Brine State Beach and is now a part of the Rhode Island State Parks.

Some type of an event of public interest was taking place circa-1959 at the pier located in the far-left top of the photo, and this view gives us a good look at the cars and trucks in the rear of the parking lot. This picture was taken back in the period during the days of the “Cold War,” and the Rhode Island Civil Defense Department was out in full force with a large van and a duck boat.

View other photos in the Park Lot Series here. Tell us about what vehicles you find of interest in this photograph courtesy of the Providence Public Library.

26 responses to “Parking Lot Series: Galilee State Park Narragansett, Rhode Island

  1. I only spot one import, a Renault 4cv on the far left next the 59 Ford wagon. I see three 59 Chevs – a wagon, a hardtop, and a convert.

  2. Being a former resident of the area this is not the Salty Brine State Beach which was previously known as Sand Hill Cove. Looking out from Salty Brine provides a view of the breakwater and Block Island. It was popular with family because of the shallow water and lack of large waves. My guess is that this is a view to the north of Galilee toward the Great Salt Pond. Every year at that time there was a tuna tournament which drew many people to the area. As for the cars, I like the old Caddy convertible in the front row.

    • Bill, Thanks for the clarification, as you know the beach is in another location. I wrote “a (parking) lot in Galilee State Park located near the Village of Galilee”

    • I grew up in Rhode Island and have been to this location countless times.

      This parking lot is not far North of the Block Island Ferry Boat landing. It is within easy walking distance South to the Galilee State Beach now named the Salty Brine Beach.

      Along Rhode Island’s South shore, the next beach to the East of the now Salty Brine Beach is what was the Sand Hill Cove Beach, now named the Roger Wheeler Beach.

      Sand Hill Cove Beach became Roger Wheeler Beach.
      Galilee State Beach became Salty Brine Beach.

      Ah, thoughts of summer.

  3. On the far left up against the fence by the Civil Defense van, I see a rather plain-Jane `58 Buick–probably a Super, with those gorgeous base-model hubcaps Buicks had in those years. Buick utilized the same basic cap from 1954 to about `64, with a simple “Buick” script across it!

  4. Parked on the far left is the tail-end of a 1959 CHEVROLET beach-wagon. The occasion may be the “Blessing of the Fleet.”

  5. Lovely two-tone Rambler. With some many cars having white-painted roofs, was that a scheme to reduce solar heating?

  6. The oldest car I can see is a 1930s coupe (GM?) at the upper left. The Cadillac convertable looks almost like a 1942 with the fence acting as a grill. The Civil Defense Duck was an Army amphibious landing craft of course, and they are still used as open air tourist vehicles in Seattle and elsewhere.

    • Back in the 1950s, my father brought home one of those “Hi Neighbor, have a Gansett” reflective bumper stickers. My mother wouldn’t allow me to put it on the family car. She said the car was not going to advertise beer.

    • Ken,

      Good eye !! Found the two NASH cars, the early bathtub on the left and the 1952 NASH in the upper right.

      While looking for these NASH automobiles found four Post War STUDIBAKER cars [1947 to ’52].

      AML

  7. What is the vehicle in the row on the RHS of the photo – 3rd back, dark colour upper panels with light colour roof and side panels? Looks like a coupe with a quite sleek style and rakish roofline.

  8. In the very lower right corner, is just the right head light of a mid-50’s F5 or 600 Ford. You can see how much taller it is than the same vintage pickup to the left. The “Wisconsin Dells Original Ducks” ( there’s 2 outfits, I think) has 92 DUKW’s in their fleet. This could very well be one of them. Very interesting story about how they came about. It remains the biggest attraction in the Dells for 70 years. I vaguely remember them as a kid, but a lot of fun. Get this, once while on a motorcycle ride, we stopped along the Wisconsin river ( where the ducks travel) and the Wis. river has a lot of sand built up in places, so the duck operator has to switch from “prop” to “wheels” when they come up on one. Experienced operators, I’m sure, know where these are, but this one duck we watched,( newbie?) got stuck on an embankment, and ground the heck out the gears, trying to get it free. Gave those people an extra jolt for their money. If you are in the area ( about an hour north of Madison) it’s well worth the trip. Kids love it.

  9. There is a 1956 Chevrolet in the front row lower right, that looks like a convertible, but it looks like 210 trim instead of BelAir trim. Chevrolet never made a 210 convertible in 1956. Anyone else notice this? Thanks.

  10. DUKW driving is an art in itself, I loved mine, and let me tell you nobody gets in your way. 85% standard GMC CCKW trucks plus a hull and marine drive. Best even amphibious vehicle.

  11. DUKW’s went all the way to the Rhine for that crossing in WWII. D=designed in 1942, U=Utility, K=All wheel drive, W=dual rear axle. Over 21,000 built! Saved a lot of lives as well since it was used extensively to evacuate wounded from beachheads.

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