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Four Fun Friday Kodachrome Car Photographs No. 226

Compared to the average car on the road at the time, the Ford in this photo almost looks like it was a space ship that had traveled from another planet and landed here on earth. Tell us when this car was constructed and how this model was related to others that followed.

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.

  • Where in the Northwest is this city located?

  • Who is this personality that was involved in show business and where was this photo taken?

  • Where was Brown & Thomas located and in what year was this photo taken?

62 responses to “Four Fun Friday Kodachrome Car Photographs No. 226

  1. In the 3rd picture [2nd expandable photograph], it appears the driver is Dave Garroway. Beyond him appears a black circa 1950 DODGE Coronet Club Coupé or PLYMOUTH Club Coupé .

  2. In the 2nd picture [1st expandable photograph], parked in front of the Kenney Shoes store, is a two-tone, four-door, 1957 DeSOTO Fireflite Hardtop.

  3. The headliner car appears to be a GT40 Mk. I based on the hood shape. The racing Mk. I and later marks had a single solid raised section rather than the split raised section. If I recall correctly, they used the same engine as the Mustang.

    • almost, the GT40 used the 289 Hi-Power variant, same as the small block Cobra, which was found in the performance Mustang but not the vanilla version. The distinctive GT40 feature was the bundle-of-snakes exhaust manifold.

      Did I mention they were all built in England?

      • The early GT40’s were built in England but later ones were built at Car Craft (not sure of that spelling) in Michigan, I don’t recall which city.

      • The 289 Hi-Po came out in 1963 Fairlanes and if one has followed such events as Goodwood Revival races, you can see some of these Fairlanes doing a pretty good job against some ‘sportier’ cars in its class. This was the only 289 option for the Fairlane. I am told that Ford also offered lightweight racing parts as well. The Hi-Po was introduced to the 64 Mustang and of course used in the Cobras and in later Sunbeam Tiger II’s, plus was the base engine for the GT40. My buddy was the designated buyer for his parents and he optioned a 64 Fairlane for his librarian mom with all the performance goodies, including a 4-speed, kind of like the Little Old Lady from Pasadena! Cream colored 4-door was a true sleeper and I hear the engine finally gave up after 100,000 miles!

  4. In the 4th picture [3rd expandable photograph], parked out front is a 1953 CADILLAC Eldorado and a 1953 OLDSMOBILE 98 which looks like a four-door. With some melting snow it is either late 1952 or early 1953.

    • Made an error. The wire wheels on this ’53 CADILLAC threw me off. The Eldorado had a wraparound windshield and a cut-down beltline, this car doesn’t have either, so this is a Sixty-Two convertible.

    • Brown and Thomas was in Ct. I seem to remember them in Hamden. If they were in New Haven, this location was on Whalley Ave., “Automobile Row”. If whats left of my memory is correct:They moved from there to an old post office in Westville and then into a custom built showroom with a domed roof made from smoked plastic bubble like panels. Sometime during all this this they changed the name to Voloshin Cadillac. The roof never stopped leaking and there were buckets of water all over the showroom; the carpet was really lovely. Class act. My dad bought a first year Seville from them. Nice car but I preferred college budget Porsche 356 with the rare “See Through” floor option. As a footnote, Mr. Voloshin’s wife had some friends place a small explosive device in his personal Caddy. The lucky bastard survived with a few less of his important bits, but I suspect the
      marriage hit a rough patch.

  5. This is just a guess, but I’m thinking photo #3 is from Watkins Glen and that the driver is Dave Garroway, host of the Today Show on NBC back then.

    Would photo #2 be Sioux Falls Idaho?

    I too am interested in the story behind photo #1.

  6. Nice GT40 in the first picture…easily my favorite race car. I think it’s a Mark I; the Mark III street cars have elongated noses and tails with different headlights.

    Picture #3 (the XK120) might be Dave Garroway from The Today Show, maybe at Watkins Glen?

  7. The 2nd photo (1st expandable) is Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The large building-side billboard reads, “60,000 Friends Welcome You To Sioux Falls, The Meeting Place For the Northwest – Chamber of Commerce 2nd Floor Of This Bldg.”

    S. Phillips Ave.
    117: J.C. Penney Co. (department store)
    123-27: F. W. Woolworth Co. (variety store)
    129: Baker’s Shoe Store
    131-35: J.J. Newberry (variety store)
    201: S.S. Kresge Co. (variety store)
    207: Federal Bake Shop
    209: G.R. Kinney Corp (shoes)

    • I remember watching the Dave Garroway in the early 50’s and they were demonstrating a Cadillac convertible, that would automatically raise the top when drops of water hit the seats.

  8. The guy in the Jag XK120 is, I believe, Dave Garroway original host of the TODAY show on NBC. He was a sports car enthusiast.

  9. In Item 1 of 3, on the right I see a ’57 Cadillac, likely a Sedan DeVille, a ’57 Bel Air Townsman wagon and a black and white ’55 Ford (small reflector in the center of the taillight vs a ’56).
    Across the street a ’55 Chevy, a ’49 or ’50 Ford convertible (visible trunk hinges vs a ’51), a ’57 DeSoto 4-door Sportsman (even though the exhaust port appears to be “pinched” like a ’58, the side trim is distinct to a ’57), a ’53 Bel Air Sedan in the street, a ’46-’48 Chevy Fleetline Aerosedan, a ’56 Mercury, very likely the mid-year slim-roofed Montclair Sport Sedan with a ’56 Plymouth Plaza sedan beside it. Two cars up, a ’57 Ford wagon.

    In Item 3 of 3, I see a green ’53 Cadillac (chrome hooded headlights) Series 62 convertible with a couple ’53 Olds in the showroom and out front: a white Ninety Eight Sedan (with visors on its side windows) with a dark green Super 88 to the right of it.

  10. 1st pic, is that guy kicking the front tire of a GT40? The girl seems uninterested, the boy, however, went on to great racing fame, and that little boys name was,, ( in my best Paul Harvey voice) 2nd pic, must be an auto parts store nearby, some fancy cars parked, and the Chevy trunk popped open, before tarp straps. 3rd pic, even identified, I didn’t know who that was, nice Jag, and Brown & Thomas appear to have been in New Haven, CT, I’d say winter ’52-’53.

  11. The Ford GT 40 is a converted Mark I racing car. This photo was taken at Reynolds Ford’s truck facility in East Syracuse NY in 1969. The photographer was my father Robert Wood and the kids are my younger siblings (twins). I was away at college.

    • The street legal GT40 was the Mark III. Something like nine were built.
      Ford UK still has one in their fleet painted that color. Might be the same car
      As someone else mentioned, the wheels are a give awAy and more the small window opening for tolls and such.

      • Not all road going GT40s were Mark IIIs. Some were converted race cars; for example, chassis P/1030 was a Mark I that was converted to roadgoing status. It was the car used in the famous “Would you let your daughter marry a Ford owner” advertisement. I have that print on my garage wall, and it’s definitely not a Mark III.

    • It’d be interesting to know what was going on that day (other than the construction) since in the background I see a VW sans front bumper and with some aftermarket wheels as well as a Lotus Elan convert with (possibly) a Fiat 124 Spider between them. Those are some funky mirrors on the Ford. The lad on the right sure looks like the youthful image of someone famous – wish I could remember who.

      • My brother Alan. He is a recognized expert on the disposal of PCB’s. That was an industrial area. I think there was a foreign car repair shop nearby.

    • Are your siblings still alive ? Did your brother grow up to be a gear head ? I was about the same age in 1969 , had I been standing next to that car , I too would have been grinning ear to ear …..probably even more so now. Should have saved my pennies and bought early on ….. just a pipe dream now unless I hit the lottery ! I do have a 1926 Ford Model T Speedster …. get’s more looks than my 1969 RS Camaro ever got !

  12. I have never thought of South Dakota as being in the Northwest, but it looks like they do.
    Watkins Glen is on NY SR14 and Dave Garroway is doing the standard scrunch of the 120 owner.
    Brown and Thomas was located at 264 Whalley Avenue in New Haven, Connecticut.

  13. In the lead picture I see a Triumph Spitfire MK IV or 1500 peeking from behind the Volkswagen. I think the picture was taken in England, ll the bystanders have a vague English look to them.

  14. Yep, a “street” model GT 40, the wire wheels are the 1st hint. My ultimate dream car, and yeah, I’m an old guy that probably couldn’t even get in and out of it, ha ! Love Mr. G’s Jag too, as well as 99 % of the cars in the street scene. Another great batch David, thanks so much.

  15. Dave===Sentimental Journey=== Garroway also owned
    a SS 100 that raced at Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin in the early 50s. Dave did not drive it, leaving that chore to a fellow from Chicago. Peace.

  16. Awnings.Stores don’t have awnings anymore.They were useful in attracting customers because people wanted to be in the shade but even towns that still have stores downtown no longer use awnings.You used to always see merchants hand cranking their awnings in at closing time.

    • Stores don’t have awnings these days because they do have air conditioning. Before A/C was common awnings were useful for blocking some of the direct sun, especially on the southern and western sides of buildings. Cars from the pre A/C era had awnings for the same reason, to block the sun.

  17. I’m inclined to think that the wire wheels, and the F-O-R-D script on the nose indicate the street version of the GT-40. the MKIII. Racing versions wore Halibrand magnesium alloy wheels and had no marque badges. Now it’s true that lettering could easily be added but I doubt anyone would substitute fragile wire wheels for the robust Halibrands which were true racing wheels.

  18. The pic of the gt40 was taken in Elyria Ohio in front of the then new Midway mall. The store to the right in the background was Sears. I beleave this my be the gt40 associated with Grant Miller a sports reporter for the Chronicle Telegram news paper. By the looks of the license plate on the beetle ,the photo was properly taken in 1967. Ohio license plate for 1967 were dark blue with white font.

    • Unless there was an identical Sears store by a Reynolds Ford in East Syracuse, Mark knows; as an Elyria Chronicle-Telegram photo shows.

      And Harold also knows: Reynolds was a Ford dealer in Syracuse and it sold Shelby Cobras.

      But we still don’t know where was their truck facility and who were the people in the photo!

  19. The third photograph is a Jaguar XK120 fixed head coupé probably 1952-1954; 3,4 litre, 162 HP; top speed 230 km/h

    • The wonderful XK series was named generally for its top speeds, 120, 140 and 150.
      230 km/h is about 143 mph, a little optimistic, I think, for Dave’s car.

  20. Maybe only the slight lack of sharpness of the photo of Dave Garroway, but those whitewalls look to be painted on. And one of my more favorite Jags of that era.

    • I agree, the whitewalls look to be painted on. I painted the whitewalls on my 1952 Packard when I bought it in 1977. At the time, you could still buy whitewall tire paint at the auto parts store. Not sure if it’s available anymore.

    • Or you could get a set of Port-o-Walls. Basically a whitewall “ring” with an inner lip retained between the bead of the tire and the rim. Also useful with a bit of that inner ring trimmed to use as a quickly applied mask when shooting yet another coat of rattle-can silver on our sports car’s wire wheels.

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