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Four Fun Friday Kodachrome Car Photographs No. 198

In a little more than a week, spring will be here and boaters who haven’t already will begin to take their machines out of storage for the new season. To kick things off for year we have posted the lead image of a Mercury convertible, boat, and trailer combination to get things rolling. In addition to telling us all about the tow rig please fill us in on the builder of the boat (note the tail fins,) and details of the engine.

As is the 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.

  • There is quite a bit to see here in this mystery location and intersection filled with 1950s vehicles and a pair of filling stations. 

  • A second unknown location, hopefully someone will know where Brown Shore Dinners was located?

  • A finally, a parking lot filled to capacity at the University Minnesota.

41 responses to “Four Fun Friday Kodachrome Car Photographs No. 198

  1. I recently returned from Barrett-Jackson’s Scottsdale auction where I saw a twin of the Mercury shown in the lead photo…a ’59 Montetey…in the same color.

    I hadn’t seen one before and was surprised by the soft rear window that mimics the hardtop’s reverse slant. Neat feature.The

    Once you get away from tri-five Chevys, 55-57 T-Birds, and Ford retractables, you don’t see a lot of convertibles from that era, so it was fun to look at.

    It was in nice, but not perfect, condition and sold for $44k.
    Seemed like a good buy.

  2. In the 2nd photograph [1st expandable picture], on the right and forward of the MERCURY beach-wagon, is a 1956 BUICK Special Riviera.

  3. 1st pic: a lovely 1960 Mercury. Cleanly styled, almost plain, yet very imposing due to its sheer size. The shape of the convertible roof is similar to the contemporary Lincolns.
    2nd pic: gotta love that 3-tone 1958 Mercury Commuter Wagon!
    3rd pic: almost 20 years divide the 1958 plane-jane Chevy (a Del Ray or maybe a Biscayne 2 door sedan, parked alongside a 1957 or 1958 Imperial) from the 1939 era GM sedan (I think a Pontiac)
    4th pic: Two black Fords side-by-side in the front row at the right: a 1940 and a 1958 model. They are the oldest and the newest car on this pic, I believe. It puzzels me that the 1940 coupe shines as brightly than the new one. It must have been the property of a very careful owner, already aware of its classic status! Also intriguing is that two-tone 1940s sedan, looks like a 1942-1947 era Hudson (but it could be a 1942-1949 era Cadillac 75 limo because of the dividers in de rear window; I can’t think of any other car which had these in the late 1940s)

  4. Great photos, and the lead image is my second favorite Mercury of them all–the `60! Nicely color-coordinated with his boat! And the second photo has a real eye-grabber: a pastel lavender & black `58 mercury Commuter hardtop wagon!! Up at the intersection appears to be a 2-tone `58 Dodge Custom Royal waiting to make a left turn.
    In the third pic, a rather derelict `39 Chevy sedan sits embarrassed by all the late-model cars surrounding it, including a `57 Buick, a black `58 IMperial sedan, and a white `58 Ford Skyliner!

  5. There is a Brown’s in Seabrook NH, but it’s doubtful the baby blue (’56?) Nash Cross Country wagon is still there.

    • Yep, that was my first guess without recognizing the name of the establishment as the area looked familiar. I used to vacation in Maine in the early 1970’s. The place is now called “Brown’s Wharf Restaurant” and it’s still on Atlantic Ave and been there since 1944. My second guess was Puget Sound, which it also bears some familiarity with but of course is a long ways off from there.

  6. These images should be distributed among the current crop of executives in charge of color selection. I’d love to hear their comments on paint of the ’50’s era. My favorite is the 58 Mercury Voyager wagon in the Lavender/Black tutone, just one of the colorful cars captured in this photo.

    • Funny, I was looking at a parking lot from a 6th floor in an office park recently and in an unscientific count, I’d say half the cars and SUVs were black or very dark gray, maybe 1/3 white and the rest were a smattering of blues and red. Boring!

  7. 1st pic, the boat appears to be a 14ft. Lone Star, with what appears to be a late 50’s Evinrude “Starflite”75 hp. V4 motor. Tandem trailer is unusual too. 2nd pic, the station on the right looks like a Gulf, and on the left is a “Calso” station, a branch of Chevron outside of California. Possibly Texas? 3rd pic, appears to be Brown Brothers Shore Dinners, Boothbay Harbor, Maine. Last pic, paved parking lots came later in the Cities. A sweet 40 (?) Ford coupe in 1st row. ’58 Ford looks like the newest.

    • FIRST PIC: — Howard, Lone Star built both aluminum and fiberglass boats. This one looks like it could be aluminum and that looks like a fairly small-sized boat for a 75 horse, I’m guessing closer to 40-50 horse. Figuring the Merc is 18 feet that means the boat is at most 16 feet and has a low transom. I think you’re right its a V-4 . At that time, only Mercury (not the Ford company) was building in-line 4 outboard motors and they were always black. A boat that small would be considered dangerous on most medium to large lakes now-a-days. I don’t think a marine dealer would recommend a 75 horse on a boat that size. A quick stop with the weight of a 75 horse could swamp the transom (even with the transom well this boat appears to have) with the wake wave.

      • Hi Richard, you could be right on the boat size and HP for the motor. Evinrude did make a 50 HP V4. Tha logo at the back looks like the Lone Star logo. Quick correction, my old man had 50’s and 60’s Merc’s on our boats, and they were were painted white, with a black or silver cowling, and ours was a 4 cylinder Mark 58A, that was bronze. All black motors ,I believe, came later.

      • I don’t think that there was a problem putting a 75hp engine on a 16 foot boat. I saw lots of them running 85. I do remember one guy putting a 125 on his and it was downright dangerous in anything but a straight line, not to mention that the transom started to crack. But it would yank two good-sized skiers (slalom) out of the water with no effort at all. Compared to my friend’s 85 which would do fine unless the skiers were going slalom; then it would plow for some time…

        • Hi George, one of the 1st motors I remember in the 60’s at our lake cottage, was a ’58ish white with silver cowling, Mercury Mark 75 ( 65 hp) It was an in-line 6 with 3 carbs, no neutral, and weighed a ton. Took 3 stout men to remove it. At the time, we had a 14 ft(?) Silverline, and it was too much. He then got that bronze with silver cowling Mark 58A ( I always wondered why Mercury did that, the “Mark” number was not the actual hp.) 4 cylinder, 2 carbs, AND a neutral, and was a much better motor. Not quite enough for skiing, but we did anyway. I remember it using a lot of gas, maybe 2, 6 gallon tanks in an afternoon.

  8. In Item 1 of 3, there appears to be just a tiny bit of a likely ’57 F-100 (emblem far forward on side of hood) peeking in on the right just behind a ’58 Mercury Voyager 4-door (has two parallel full-length pieces of side trim vs a Commuter wagon’s parallel pieces only on the front half), then a ’56 Buick Special 2-door Riviera, a ’54 Mercury Custom 4-door sedan, a two-tone ’58 Bel Air, likely a ’57 Studebaker in black, a ’57 Belvedere sedan and probably a Dodge, either ’57 or ’58.
    Behind the U-haul trailer, a white over black ’56 Pontiac 870 with the optional chrome accent ahead of the taillight

    In Item 2 of 3, a white ’55 Mercury Monterey wagon (no Colony Park till ’57), a white ’58 Skyliner, a 56 Chevy Two-Ten, a ’57 or ’58 Imperial sedan, a ’58 Chevy 2-door sedan, likely a Delray, a ’55 Pontiac to-tone Star Chief sedan and a black ’55 Plymouth in the base Belvedere model.
    Across the way a ’56 Rambler, either a Nash Super wagon or a Hudson Fleetside wagon.

    In Item 3 of 3, it interesting how the sun catches the small ribs on the roof of the black ’58 Ford Fairlane or Fairlane 500 Club Victoria in the front row…two down from a red ’53 or ’54 Rambler wagon

    • Unless my cataracts are deceiving me, the Plymouth in the 1st (enlargable) pic has a tall fin like a ’56 not a ’55 and powered by a flathead six since I don’t see a ‘V’ on the front.

  9. In the last photo the 1940 Ford coupe looks like a “standard” model with DeLuxe headlight bezels. It’s a nice car and that was a common swap to add some bright work to the front.

  10. Also in Item 3 of 3, second row up, third car in is probably a ‘52 Lincoln Capri (3-piece rear window and smaller trunk emblem vs ’53 or ’54)…missing he standard fender skirt(s?). Two rows back from that could be a ’51 Packard 200 in pale green

  11. In the second picture the Mopar? wagon entering the intersection from the right looks as if it has had some wrecking yard body work on the front fender.

  12. Also in the second picture coming in near the top is a red 1954 or first-series ’55 chevy pickup with what looks like a utility bed. The very distintive grill is visible at a distance.

  13. My father bought a new 1960 Mercury Monterey 4 door sedan when I was in high school. What an awful under powered barge that thing was. Of course if he had bought that red convertible in photo 1, I’m sure my thoughts would be a little different today.

    • In a misguided effort to give the ’60 Monterey better gas mileage, the base engine was a 312 ci two barrel. That was good for the ’56 Monterey sedan at 3,550 the first year of the 312 but not so much the ’60 at 4,029.

      • Yep. Just before the 60, the family car was a 1956 Monterey Pheaton 4 door HT. with dual exhaust. A much lighter more nimble car. It could do battle with my friend’s ’56 Pontial Catalina. Fun times for sure.

  14. In the first photo, the boat behind the Mercury is an aluminum Lone Star runabout with a 50 h.p. 1958 V4 Evinrude, the largest outboard then available as well as the first V-type to be offered.

  15. The 60 Mercury convertible in the first picture has very wide white walls. I think by 60 they were narrower.

    • Hildreth, in the US the narrow whitewall stripes (usually 3/4” – 1”) first appeared on the ’57 Cadillac Eldorado Brougham on an unusual 8.40 x 15 size tire, then in ‘60 on the Corvair Monza on a 13” wheel…which spread to other cars with 13” wheels in ’61. Also in ’61 the Olds Starfire introduced them on 14” wheels but they were not generally available on other models and makes until the autumn 1961 introduction of the ’62 models.
      The ’60 Mercury didn’t have them…which you can see in Mercury brochures in any number of car brochure sites online.

  16. The building with all of the chimneys in the University of Minnesota shot is Falwell Hall. The large building to the left is Northrup Auditorium. The dome building on the far right is across the street from the far end of Falwell in Dinkytown. Oddly enough everyone calls it the Dinkydome! All those buildings are extant. Being Minnesota I can probably guarantee that every car in that lot got rusted into oblivion except maybe that 40 Ford coupe. It looks slightly hot-rodded already. With a 58 Ford next to it it is already 18 years old and looking really nice.

  17. In the last photo (Item 3 of 3), the building in the distance with all the chimneys is the Late Renaissance style Folwell Hall along University Ave SE on the U of M Main Campus in Minneapolis. Unseen to the right of the fence at the lower right corner is the main line of the Great Northern Railway that, in another mile or so, would cross the Stone Arch Bridge over the Mississippi into downtown Minneapolis.

    During my University years, I spend many an afternoon and evening working in these parking lots around the campus (admission: 35 cents). To me, it was the best job on campus…a bit of rush every hour and then 45 uninterrupted minutes to study.
    I was working the lot seen across SE 4th St (mid-way back) the night of the “Birthday” Vietnam Draft Lottery in December of ’69, when every radio in town was tuned in to it. I thought I was lucky when I got #209…but they called up anyone without a deferment up to #215. The following February, on a bitter cold morning at 6AM, I had to report to the Selective Service for my physical. I failed…and the morning suddenly seemed so very much warmer.

  18. Love that 1960 Merc convertible.. In 1963 my brother walked away with only a few scratches when a drunk driver crossed the center line on a two lane road and when they swerved to miss him they went into a ditch and rolled over. These cars were tanks and built to last!

    • Yes, that interests me as well. Very nice car, late model top of the line boat. Patched up brick street where the boat and Merc sit, ratty lawns and a really ratty cement wall as a back drop to the boat and car. All this is further accented with what appears a totally unpaved road. Michigan still has probably 100’s if not 1,000’s of urban dirt roads, but this doesn’t appear to be in Michigan.

  19. Ford, Lincoln and Mercury had the market covered with many models. What gap did Edsel aim for? What was FoMoCo thinking?

    • Hi JMZ, pretty much the reason Edsel failed. I believe it was a Mercury offering, fancier than a Mercury, but not quite a Lincoln, going after the Olds-Buick market.

  20. 1st. Photo: I believe the boat is a 1959 Lone Star 15 ft. Newport sitting on a Mastercraft tandem trailer. Motor appears to be a 1959 Evinrude 50 HP V-4 Starflite.

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