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The Jet Age Comes to the St. Louis Auto Show

The Jet age apparently had arrived in St. Louis in time for this photo of the Auto Show, held there at some point during the 1953 model year. A U. S. Air Force F-86 Sabre Jet is set up to compliment the Packard, Oldsmobile, Chevrolet and Willys products arranged around it on the floor. On the far right next to the cleaning man appears to be a GM “Dream Car”.

The photo is courtesy of Joe Sonderman who has a Route 66 photo collection (scroll down) that we have been posting in a series. He has written many interesting books about Route 66, one covering Arizona you can see here.

2 responses to “The Jet Age Comes to the St. Louis Auto Show

  1. Dave, this is an interesting picture for sure. Love the F-86. I remember when I was in my 20’s there was a junk yard I would check for part now and then, and they had the canopy to an F-86 sitting right outside the office/gas station. Some times you find the strangest things in junk yards. Unfortunately the yard is long gone now.

  2. I wonder how they got an F-86 in there and how it was mounted. I’d guess this must have been late in 1952, when the ’53 models were still new. The F-86 was a first-line fighter at the time, and it was the height of the Korean War. We didn’t have enough F-86’s to counter the Soviet MIG-15’s then, and were still using the far inferior straight wing F-80 and F-84. This would have been something like diverting an F-22 for a car show during an active conflict today. Different times I guess.

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