On the back of this photo someone wrote, simply: “My better half.” I’m no genius, but I think it would be safe to assume that the person who wrote that was this man’s wife. It’s either that, or this man wrote it referring to the “better half” as his 1952 Willys Aero Wing. People loved their cars back then, so who knows?
As far as the car goes, this one stumped me. Completely. I could come within a year or two of its model date but that was all. I had to check in with a friend who knows old cars much better than I. Thank you Jerry! Jerry’s helped me on several occasions before and never disappoints. After he told me what he thought it was (1951 Willys), I snooped around the internet and believe this car to be a 1951 or 1952 Willys Aero Wing and not the Aero Lark. Although similar, the “Aero Wing” had its radio antenna on the driver’s side. The “Aero Lark” on its passenger side. Go figure.
I must have had more than one photo of the same person with his/her car — it happens from time to time. Something about this shot was familiar, I’ve seen this guy before, and recently!. Just a couple of posts ago, if you look, I featured a man by the name of “Sir Smokealot” (click here to see that post) and his 1937 Packard.
Seems this guy really enjoys scraping his shoe on his 1937 Packard and he’s not impartial to any one bumper — front, back, it’s all the same to him. Of course, since I don’t know this guy I’m only guessing that this is his expensive boot scrape. He’s posed the same in both shots… could be that his right leg is just permanently bent like this and the height of Packard bumpers that year is ideal for a man of his size. It keeps him from falling over……. which explains the smile. Sure would like to know what he keeps in his left pocket — must be really important.
I don’t believe I’ve seen a happier group of people in any of my dozens of Attic Autos blog posts. Don’t they look as if they are having a blast? We should all have friends, and times, and memories such as this. Yes? Hard to do when we have to be strapped in with lap and shoulder belts like we do nowadays. And you can’t even pretend to be having this much fun in a vehicle when the car you’re in is a Pontiac Aztek, Dodge Dart or, god forbid, a Chevy Traverse. Ugh.
The car is a very cool 1949 Hudson Super Six, most likely Dad’s ’49 Hudson Super Six.
For styling, when viewed from their sides, cars from the 1930s were all within degrees of each other (with the exception of the super luxuries). It wasn’t until you looked at their grilles could you more easily distinguish them apart.
Have to hand it to the designers at Packard who changed their beautiful full-car designs through the years but always kept that signature shape to the top of their grille. Because of it, you could spot a Packard (Packie) from great distances.
For those who aren’t sure what I’m talking about, look at the shape of their grill, above, the top portion in particular. This grill is on a 1937 model, Now look at the shot of two other Packard grilles (left), one from the 40s and one from the 50s. The top shape of that grille is the same. THAT’S branding!
Now, if we could only convince Sir Smokealot to keep his dirty shoe off the bumper…..
“Over 50,000 youngsters must be right — Every summer, in more than 250 cities, over 50,000 boys enter the Soap Box Derby and find fulfilment in the challenge of building a gravity racer”, or so said Mason Bell, General Manager, All-American Soap Box Derby, Inc. back in 1966.
As a kid, I always wanted to do this. I never made the time or had the tools — out catching frogs or teasing any one of my five sisters, most likely.
Pictured here is a long-time friend of mine, Keith, standing in his older brother Mark’s racer, on the lawn of their 13 Mile Rd. Royal Oak, MI residence. Shot in 1955 or ’56. Not certain how he finished in his race(s) but the real fun in the Soap Box Derby of years past was the time you spent building your first car.
Keith was kind enough to grant me permission to use this photograph here, and as an added bonus tossed in these two others. Enjoy this look back to a day when there were no cell phones, apps or wifi, just kids having fun being kids (click the image to enlarge). Thanks, Keith!