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Four Fun Friday Kodachrome Car Photographs Number 188

This week’s Kodachrome feature begins with an image apparently shot in the mid-1950s at a Pure Oil Company filling station located in Point Pleasant, WV, at the intersection 6th and Viand Streets. At the time this was a gathering place for car enthusiasts and young people in the area. The gasoline station has not survived and the spot is now a parking lot for a McDonalds restaurant.

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 you find of interest in the photos. You can take look back at all the earlier parts of the Kodachrome Photographs series here. The images are via This Was Americar.

  • My how times have changed, in the early-1960s you could drive your car to this spot and make a high speed run.

  • This gentleman had the perfect rig for traveling and camping in the wide open spaces of the west.

  • A spring time view of a Standard Oil SOHIO filling station, can anyone identify the location?


62 responses to “Four Fun Friday Kodachrome Car Photographs Number 188

    • I also noticed that ’55 Pontiac right off the bat. For some reason cars photographed back in the days when they were actually in use and not long after having been bought always look better than those same models being shown today that have been preserved. I definitely like the color combination of that car. The lower color was apparently called Marietta Blue, but that is not a known color. I think that gunmetal blue might be the closest recognizable color that would match it today. Nice!

    • There is also a green one in front of the black ’37? Chevy.
      Also, the red and white fender on the right could belong to a 55-56 Buick

  1. That last picture looks like a St in Pt. Pleasant, WV also, not sure because of the filling
    station. The surroundings look so much like it.

  2. In the 2nd photograph, on the outside [close to the water] is a 1961 CHEVROLET Bel Air Sport Coupé.

    Taking a wild guess that this is Jacksonville Beach, Florida, in the afternoon, south of Beach Blvd.

  3. The first photo looks like pure small town Americana! Young kids gathering at the local station on a Saturday morning to chew the fat, get the latest gossip, and talk cars. I was definitely born about 15 years too late (sigh). I can only drool at the second photo. Definitely sometime in `61, with the latest hi-po offerings running the sands in Florida–the black `61 Starliner is either a 390 3-deuce, or the newly introduced 401. The baby blue Dodge Phoenix hardtop is very likely a D-500 with a long cross-ram 383 that puts out 330HP! Back on the right, a new `61 Impala, with probably a 348 of some configuration. (I’d guess 409, but I don’t think that Impala is an “SS”.)

    • Will, the next Hi-po Ford V8 engine after the 390 was the 406, not a 401, but it was introduced in 1962 I think, with both a 4V and Tripower. I had both of those engines.

  4. Nice group of pictures! Opening shot with a bunch of toughs in a gas station showing off their cars. Cad without caps, owner looking at camera. Probably a souped up OHV under the hood. Behind it is a new 1955 Chevrolet conv., with an equally new Ford. 1961 Ford, with another Ford, Dodge, and Chevy behind the lead car, Behind the Dodge is a ’61 Pontiac. The last photo reminds of gas stations when i was a kid. Must be a Pontiac dealer in town, 2 1955’s and a 1956. Three town 1956 Dodge, and a 1950 Nerc coupe that looks a little tired. Great photos, Dave. Thanks, John.

  5. 1st pic,,trouble a brewin’ The greaser is giving the nerd a hard time, with fellow greaser leaning against the car, for backup and son, when you’re done with the Cadillac, could you put the wheel covers back on? 2nd pic, the ’61 Ford Starliner with possibly the new 390 T-bird motor from Illinois must have had a mishap on the way down. Looks like a NASCAR event, racing on the beach at Daytona was very popular. 3rd pic, dad insisted on being alone in the truck, for whatever reason with the Ford following. The truck has to be a ’62, ’63 had amber turn signals. Can anyone ID the minibike? Last, it’s not Wisconsin, we never had Sohio stations, even though Sohio was not just sold in Ohio. The license plates look like mid 50’s Ohio, however.

        • It does seem to be a Tote Gote style trail scooter. The engine is a Cushman, but the rest of the scooter is completely different from the Cushman Trailster. As the seat does not appear to be original, I think it is has been assembled by that gentleman to suit his needs. Over the last 60 years I have done just that with motor bikes, scooters, and motorcycles.

    • I won’t attach labels to the guys and gals in the photo. Dating the photo by the cars it’s 1955 so the discussion could be multi-faceted. In my temporary home in the Jim Crow South jeans were only suitable for work clothing on the farm or garage duty never school nor the drive-in (restaurant or movie).

      Even though they’re in out-a-ways, WV or thereabouts doesn’t mean that one or more might be tuned into road racing and European competition. If it’s early autumn the Le Mans disaster was an international story of horrible death and destruction in the September car mags (June newspapers). A 62 Caddy driving kid might have followed Cunningham’s Le Mans efforts and removed his wheel covers to lower unsprung weight. Further discussion might have followed on merits of the ’54 & ’55 Cadillacs new wider front tread that was only 3 inches narrower than the rear versus the 4 inch narrower tread that was standard on all 1946 through 1953 Cadillacs – ’61 s, 62s with a 45 ft turning circle, the 60 Fleetwood at 46 ft and the 75 at 51 ft per Cadillac data.

      Pure unadulterated conjecture on my part. Of course.! Perhaps they’re were discussing how wonderful or wonderfully awful the revolutionary new Citroen DS is. Not likely. Than again? What’s on the silver screen tonight? Much more likely.

      However, the car guys I knew in the South from divergent economic backgrounds were keen on drag racing (a few), Nascar (far more), burning rubber (even though some had to begin in reverse to break loose those old bias plies when they opted for a “go forward” gear) a bunch and finally the smallest group – the road racing fiends.

  6. Why can we see the ’55 Ford hubcap through the guy dressed in black?
    Oh well, saddle oxfords, penny loafers, and holding the door for the cute girl – don’t see any of that today.

  7. I will say the kids at the gas station in the first pic look pretty slender compered to the kids I see today. Maybe just a Wisconsin thing?

    • Given that – as of recent surveys at least – Wisconsinites are considered to be on average the “lardiest” inhabitants of this nation I doubt there’s been a complete reversal of standings in the intervening years. Perhaps the fact that steroids and HGH weren’t in common circulation back then? Today would anyone consider writing a song extolling the heroic antics of a “long, lean, lanky Jones?” (“Along came Jones” by the Drifters for anyone who needs to look it up.)

  8. In the lead photo a “55 Fairlane V8, a ’55 Bel Air convertible, a ’49 Cadillac Series 62 Touring sedan and a ’52-54 Ford Mainline Tudor Sedan or Business Coupe, I think I see a V8 emblem.

    Photo #1: a group of ‘61s: a pair of Starliners, an Impala HT, a Dart sedan and behind, likely a Pontiac in black…might be a Bonneville.

    Photo #2 a ’62 GMC (clear turn signal lens) and a ’61 Galaxie…could be a Club sedan

  9. Photo #3 a red and white ’55 Olds pulling in on the right, probably a Metro van blocking most of a ’56 Pontiac Chieftain HT, a ’55 Pontiac 4-dr sedan at the pumps and another one pulling out joined by a ’56 Dodge Royal Lancer 4-door. Down the side street, possibly a ’55 Fairlane two-tone ahead of ’55 Mainline in black…could be a police car, followed by perhaps a ’50 Buick sedan in grey

  10. Photos 2 & 3; Great to see the 61 Fords! Dad bought a new 61 Country Sedan (station wagon) with the 292 V8, overdrive and factory air. It had black walls and poverty caps from new but those were quickly changed to full wheel covers and white walls. It didn’t take long to wear out tires even in the early 60’s! Plus he added fender skirts. It was pretty spiffy with all the factory installed stainless trim. It lasted us about 10 years and he was always quick to point out that even at 100,000 miles “the heads had never been off”!

  11. I saw a YouTube video of a similar colored ’61 Starliner the other day. Looks like a trial run at Daytona. People would take their street cars to the beach during Speed Weeks.

  12. Great pics.
    2nd photo, of course is Daytona Beach, the first place I ever squared the speed limit, in ’63.
    Looks like time trials, just south of the Sunglow pier which still exists, albeit a bit shorter due to storms.

  13. On pic 2, I’m guessing Speed Week at Daytona in ’61, given all the cars are that year. One so far hasn’t been identified – you can just see a ’61 Dart tail light on the right edge of the photo!

    SOHIO was Standard of Ohio’s home territory brand (BORON out of territory) so most likely that’s somewhere in Ohio. Large number of cars parked on the lot along with the tree buds suggests everyone’s come in for a spring tuneup and lube job.

  14. First picture: I hope the Cadillac doesn’t have too much of a souped up engine. The tires look as if they might not make another quarter mile race. Although in my day I would certainly rescue them from the dump for any of my old jalopies.
    And do I see Superman in that enclosed phone booth?

  15. We have had quite a few 60-66 GMC’s lately, my favorite truck.
    This one may be a Custom Cab, possibly a 1/2 ton.
    I should know, but don’t ,the make of the white sedan with the flattened rear window next to the hydrant in the last pic.

  16. FIRST PHOTO: I don’t know about the rest of you, but if I had shown up to my teen hangouts in a Cadillac (even one a few years old), I would have been razzed unmercifully by my friends for being an a$$.

  17. Do “real men” wear b/w saddle shoes? Not to my knowledge/recollection at that particular point in time.

  18. I grew up in Pt Pleasant . This was Russ Krodel’s Pure OIl Station (He owned the company that delivered gas). If you went straight on RT 35 you crossed the bridge into Ohio. This was the bridge that collapse in Dec 1967 (48 people died ) right before XMas. I graduated in 1961. The collapse of the bridge changed the town for the worst .Over the following years business dropped off and alot of business disappeared. The town is now famous for the
    “Mothman” movie and now a big festival in the fall. Was a great place to grow up in-a town of 3500 in the 50’s. I don’t know anyone in the picture. The last photo of Sohio station is not in Point Pleasant. On the left the huge building in the background ins not in my hometown.

    • Frank, it appears that the old 3-story brick building in the background of the first photo is still standing. It’s at the northwest corner of 6th Street and Viand Street (Hwy 2 and Hwy 62). The gas station is now a McDonald’s parking lot.

  19. First photo, Looks like Henderson WV, based upon Gallipolis, OH being 4 miles away. Also, currently, every state around Ohio requires only a rear plate, so it eliminates Ohio in all likelihood

  20. In the first photo, the 48 Caddy.. I don’t think any typical “Hood” of this era would have wanted to be seen in a four door Caddy! And he never would have spent hard earned money to hop it up! Now maybe he pop the good looking hub caps to. Sell or trade! It is either his Gramps old car or he just picked it up for a song, and going to pull that big ole V8 and swap it into a light weight 29 to 40 Ford coupe or roadster, add a set of 3 deuce carbs, with that Hot ISKY cam he has been saving for the right cool Hot Rod!

  21. About Henderson WV. For the beginning photo . If you turned left( at intersection) and go about 10 blocks you will cross another bridge ( across the Kanawha River) into the town of Henderson ( or what is left of it). This is around 1955-57. Iam still trying to fiqure out everyone.

  22. On a second, more detailed, inspection of the GMC and little scooter, we are mystified by the black blob on the left fender.
    I don’t think the rest of the truck looks like it belongs to the worst Bondo applier in history.
    Maybe it is a tool sticking out of the back of the bike, which doesn’t really look like a Tote Gote.
    Ideas, please.

  23. If I were to venture a guess I’d say the last photo of the SOHIO station would be in Celina, Ohio. The church dome in the background looks like it could be the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church. If correct, then the gas station would be at the corner of N. Walnut and W. Livingston or W. Fulton. Hard to say though, because none of the houses in the background exist at this location.

    • Looks like my grandfather’s old gas station sohio 123rd and corlett in Cleveland and our old house in the background

  24. I believe the Cadillac in the first pic is a 50, if so it was valve in head V-8. The Chevrolet in last pic is a 39, note the tail lamps up high on side s of trunk.

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