An Entertaining & Informative Vintage Automobile Internet Magazine

Four Fun Friday Forties, Fifties and Sixties Kodachrome Car Images

Number One-Hundred and Ten of the Kodachrome Image Series begins this week with a photo of a woman standing by a Cadillac convertible in front of the Stardust Resort and Casino. The parking lot is full of 1950s cars and a some that date to the early-1960s which indicates that this image was taken only about two or three years after the famous Las Vegas hot spot opened in 1958.

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.

  • Someone took this vacation photo of their 1950s Ford sedan and Sportcraft travel trailer in a very spot.

  • This late-1950s image was taken in an unknown city, can any of our readers tell us where the photo was taken, the names of the streets in this view, and identify the vehicles?

  • Mr. happy-go-lucky is pictured with a GM sedan and a teardrop trailer, while on the other side of the filling station parking lot is a less than happy man having the collision damage on a Chrysler Products sedan checked out. 



46 responses to “Four Fun Friday Forties, Fifties and Sixties Kodachrome Car Images

  1. 1960 Cadillac looks new, mom looks less than thrilled. At first I thought that she was wearing an ugly green hat! A 1956 Ford four door in a desolate spot, I hope it didn’t overheat. A 1953 Ford sedan delivery at the light next to a beautiful copper bus stop. A happy camper at the Shell station with his 1948 Buick and matching tear drop trailer.

    • That Seattle shelter is a true work of industrial art. I wonder how old it is now? Bronze and glass are forever, especially in Seattle where it seldom freezes. The cost of those casting today ?

      • The Pioneer Square Pergola was originally built as a below grade restroom. The restrooms were closed decades ago but I believe they are still down there(!). A few years ago a truck hit the pergola and it collapsed, breaking much of the cast iron, fortunately it was restored and looks as good as ever. The Seattle Hotel on the right was razed c.1962 and replaced with a parking garage know locally as the “sinking ship” due to it’s triangle shape and odd angle.

        • The Pioneer Building is the red brick building in the background. It’s the starting point for tours of “underground Seattle” – this section of town was raised a full story around the turn of the century, and the old storefronts are still below!

          The car crossing 1st is a ’52-’54 Ford, with the same vintage Courier sedan delivery at the light on Yesler Way. The sedan to the left is a low-to-mid level ’58 Ford, and the car creeping in just to the right on Yesler is a ’56 Chrysler – New Yorker, I think, judging by the grille.

          On Jame s – the street angling up the hill, there’s a ’48-’50 Ford F-Series medium-duty truck – lots of Ford’s here, although Seattle did have an assembly plant – designed by Albert Kahn and still standing – in the prewar era.

  2. Again great pictures !!

    In the 1st photograph, parked on the left, is a white over light blue 1955 or ’56 BUICK Riviera Century or maybe a Special.

    In the 3rd photograph, parked on the left in front of the red brick building, is a light green 1950 BUICK Sedanet [either a Special or Super].

    In the 4th photograph, in the foreground, looks like a maroon 1946 or ’47 BUICK [either a Super or Roadmaster].

      • Lance, I had the same problem so I looked at the brochure. It’s definitely a sedanette; Buick did’t make a 2-door sedan or coupe that year.

        • Buick did make a coupe in 1950. It was the Special Business Coupe, Model 46. Sources differ on how many of these three passenger vehicles were produced. The Buick a Complete History shows 2,500 while Seventy Years of Buick states 1,062. It was Buick’s lowest price car for the year at $1,803.

          Since this model did not have the trim piece from behind the front wheel to the back fender, this model cannot be what is shown in the photo. The model is listed in the Buick catalog shown in The Old Car Manual Project website (as the Special 2-Door, 3-Passenger Jetback Coupe, Model 46).

  3. 1st pic, mom a little ticked off they lost a bundle at the casino. Oh well, new Caddy, not a big issue. Can’t mistake those 1960 Plymouth fins behind her. 2nd pic, the trailer is a SportCraft. 3rd pic, Seattle clearly a Ford town, Even the cops drove ’58 Ford’s. Last pic, we always wondered why Uncle Buck was always so jovial,,, until we checked the glove compartment,,, can’t id the teardrop, but the hubcap has an upside down name, starts with an S.

    • Judging by the greenhouse, that’s a ’57 or ’58 Plymouth showing its fins. And the turquoise car behind sour mom is a ’60 Ford.

  4. In the lower left corner of the top photo, the headlamp of a `54 Lincoln. On the other side of the white `60 Series 62 Caddy is a `60 Ford Fairlane sedan, with a `58 Ford Custom 300 sedan next to it.
    Howard: the tailfin you see behind the lady isn’t a `60 Plymouth; it’s a `58.

  5. Great photos in a great series. What really strikes me are the tail lights, or near lack there of, on the trailers. Yikes.

    • Hi B V 4,there was very little travel at night in the 50’s and 60’s. My parents had trailers when I was a kid, did a lot of traveling, but by 3 pm, mom had the “Woodall’s” out, and by 5:30, we had the leveling jacks out. The only time I remember traveling at night, was if we had trouble, or on the last leg and had to drive at night to get home.

  6. Happy Friday!

    To the right of the 57 / 58 Plymouth is a 51/52 Mopar (New Yorker?) hardtop. To the right of it looks to be a Comet.

      • Agree. It is a Chevy, anywhere fro ’50 to ’52. Need to be able to see the trunk handle to tell. ’50 handle was T shaped.

    • Just have to mention that the Caddy sports my favorite type of wheel. Over Mr. Happy’s left shoulder say hi to what seems to be an ‘A’ coupe.

  7. Plymouth rear fender fin is not a ’60; it’s more shark-like which means it’s prior to 1959. STARDUST Casino was reputed to be owned by the mob.

    • On a website dedicated strictly to the 1960 Plymouth, the is a picture of a Belvedere with a view of its tail end and it looks a lot like the one here. Also, the Old Cr Manual Project has factory brochures for 1960 that suggest it could be a ’60. It would be nice if that lady would move her Caddy so we could get a better look at the Plymouth, and the Chevy next to it.

      • The six-window greenhouse pegs it as a ’57 or ’58. The ’60 sedans used a heavier 4-window greenhouse.

  8. Like Mike … Happy Friday… Great Fotos again, David… The Mopar hdtp mite be same vintage GM, Chevy or little Buick? Happy Father’s Day to those who are!

  9. I see a lot of 59 and 60 Cadillacs restored today wearing wire rims, this is the first contemporary photo I’ve seen where a 60 Caddy has them.

  10. Mr Happy appears to have something stuffed up his right pant leg , check out the shoe , there’s something behind it and the cuff looks mishappen
    Maybe he had polio as a youngster and had a brace of some sort

  11. Hi guys, I enjoyed this batch of what seem like ordinary snap shots at first. Each has lots of stories hidden in them.

    The 1st photo Cadillac convertible is definitely a 1960 year model by the one year only front headlight and fender line profile. Very nice car! That lady looks like she is very fit and probably enjoys strenuous outdoor sports or some other form of physical fitness regimen. It is a hilarious photographic accident that the green bush way behind her seems to be growing out of her hair. The cars seem quite crowded in that parking lot. She may be grumpy because she just took off her sun glasses or she might not be able to get the very large door on the car opened enough to get in (nice `54 Lincoln too close?) or she simply wants to leave that cheasy Stardust Casino after losing some money or having a poor meal or service there. More likely, she just wants the old man (holding the camera) to get in the car and let them get going to a nicer destination and good friends.

    Odd little step van delivery truck (turquoise) next to the front of the casino, not out back at loading dock. What gives? Milk man gone in on lunch break for a quick round of “21“ or a free “pull“ on a one arm bandit using a promo coupon? Gambling IS a disease with some folks.

    Photo #2. I like the nice clean lines of the `55 Ford Fordor. Did anyone notice that the hood is NOT up? Probably not stopped due to overheated engine. Odd background mountain terrain is probably the reason for stopping at the “turn out“ to get a snapshot. You might recall that polite drivers (of the past) used to use the turn-outs frequently to allow traffic to go around the slower vehicles especially on mountain roads with many winding turns. The driver of the Ford has also equipped it with a special fender mounted (temporary) side view mirror to help look beyond the wide travel trailer. These were frequently rented at trailer rental shops and installed while you waited for fitment of the trailer hitch and stop/tail/turn signal lights and even the hook up of electric trailer brakes and a little controller mounted on your steering column. A nice safety package for the smart driver.

    Regarding photo #3 of old Seattle and the comments of Ford Motor Co. How about someone showing us a link or photo of the exterior of the famous Ford assembly plant. I have seen some old video of a motor tour with Edsel Ford going around the interior of the plant but it wasn`t very busy due to Great Depression around the time of the film I have seen. No orders, no production situation.

    Photo #4: That mechanic (in white overalls) seems to have his right hand groping around the top of the RR tire, like he looking for something (a puncture nail) or a chunk of rubber missing from the tread) while he is staring into space away from the old car. I don`t think he is doing any “body work“ with his bare hands on the old clunker. Ma is patiently waiting while dad is supervising.

    Mr. Happy next to his Buick needs a large pocket protector in case his large fountain pen springs a leak and ruins his nice blue shirt. He looks like he might be an “artiste“ or entertainer who has a look-alike mug and mustache similar to Mr. Walt Disney. His garb is definitely “Western Casual“ with the off the rack button-everywhere shirt, the childlike belt buckle and jaunty western style Fedora. His rig looks pretty basic and is probably not a rental tear-drop. Nice touch added to the tear-drop are the side marker lamps (very useful for night time driving). He travels at night since the Buick does not offer A/C in this year and he is traveling mostly in the summer through the West. Looks like some red dirt or rust on lower rear of Buick and on the tear-drop. I bet he has hauled that little rig behind his heavy gas guzzling Fire Ball Eight Buick sedan all over the West! Maybe telling stories or writing new ones for pulp fiction books and magazines.

    That blacktop at the Shell station (note the unique bright yellow and red trim) is really n rough shape like it gets cracked every season and the owner doesn`t care or has no funds to fix it this year!

    I think we have all met Mr. Happy Go Lucky at some time in our youth on a vacation trip stop where he told us a wild and funny road trip story while we ate a burger, fries and a Coke.

  12. Dad pulled a teardrop with his ’48 Chevy, filled with luggage, mom and at least 4 kids. Got rid of it in 54 or so and I only have memories of one trip. Big load for a stovebolt to pull, probably a big load for the brakes as well. When we got our ’56 (another Stovebolt) the teardrop was long gone. Seemed to be convenient though, with cooking and food spaces, sleeping area for a couple and other space as well. As long as some of the family doesn’t mind sleeping in the car (as I always did).

  13. The 1955 ford pic just needs Lucy and Dezi. They pulled the grade in the long, long trailer now they would have no fear of making it with the short, short trailer.

    • As for the Fairlane series, the “dip” in the trim is further back on the door on a ’56. Also, the trim from the dip to the rear of the car is wider and fluted on the ’56. Mainline and Customline cars are easier to differentiate.

  14. The 1955 models had the Ford crest above the center of the dip, but the 1956 models did not. It’s usually very easy to spot.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *