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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • VINTAGE ALASKA, c. 1920s

Fill Er Up: 1940

Fill Er Up: 1940

July 1940. "Auto of migrant fruit worker at gas station in Sturgeon Bay, Wisc." Photo by John Vachon for the Farm Security Administration. View full size.

 

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Model A Bumper

Looks like the a modified rear bumper for a Model A ford

STOP!

Note the stop light on car consists of a single lamp cyclops bulb with the words STOP cast into the metal.

I agree that the back panel looks hand-made; a prototype limousine perhaps?

[For the upscale migrant worker market? Also, the "STOP" is glass as well. - tterrace]

beer can gas cap

In all my years of pumping gas and laying various versions of improvised gas caps on the car, I recognize the beer can nesting temporarily on the rear window. Hard times indeed.

Homemade Camper?

Impossible to say with any certainty what kind of car this is (for me, anyway), since the rear end is obviously modified with some sort of hand-fabricated panel. It looks to me like it might be hinged, ala the rear end of a teardrop trailer, so that you could cook, etc., under its shelter.

Since they were in Sturgeon Bay, they were there to pick cherries. There are worse ways to make a living as a migrant worker than camping in Door County, Wisconsin, and picking cherries!

I dont think he's pumping Ethyl

Migrant fruit pickers could probably only afford Ethyl's sister, Regular.

Early RV?

We have all seen pix of the typical "Okie" and his car. Mattresses, pots and pans, washboards etc. strapped willynilly to a worn out old heap. This car was well thought out and built, with it's extension at the rear which may have allowed sleeping in the car or keeping valuables out of the weather

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