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Our Merry Oldsmobile: 1939

Our Merry Oldsmobile: 1939

1939. "General Motors exhibit, Golden Gate International Exposition, San Francisco. Girls in Oldsmobile convertible coupe." Anyone need a lift? 8x10 film negative, originally from the Wyland Stanley collection. View full size.


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Noise reduction

I suspect the missing horn button (spotted by Vintagetvs) was an attempt to keep the exposition hall a little quieter. The last time I went to the (new) auto show here in town, nearly every car on display had the negative battery cable disconnected; this keeps visitors from honking the horn, turning on the headlights or four-way flashers, etc. I assume GM faced the same problems 76 years ago.

Those Eyebrows

I love this photo! Those faces! My grandmother, born in 1912, plucked her eyebrows too. The idea was that you could make them so much prettier than Mother Nature. You dyed or bleached your hair, you plucked your eyebrows and made them better! It made as much sense to her as adding makeup. I think they were right! It's sexy!

Model Railroad

There's more about the model railroad in the background and the locomotive on the pedestal here: The model railroad does resemble the one that was in the Chicago Museum of Science & Industry; both were designed by model railroad pioneer Minton Cronkhite.

The Ears Have It

Tobacconist is right -- definitely Sally. Check the ears (old cop trick -- you can disguise a lot but it's tough to change your ears).

Hellooo, Ladies!

[I hate to burst your bubble (so to speak), but that's not Sally Rand. The incisors (and faces) don't match. Nor do the ages -- Sally would have been 35 when this picture was made. Not to mention the fact that General Motors would hardly be hiring strippers to show off its new cars to the families of America. - Dave]

Trains On The Horizon

I'd like to see a view of the model railroad in the background and check out that giant F7 Engine at the top.

Santa Fe

The model train display in front of the Santa Fe booth looks a lot like the one that was originally built for the Museum of Science & Industry in Chicago by Santa Fe.

The Back Seat

Doesn't look as big in this picture from the brochure.


But plenty of it on the last Olds to have running boards.


My mother would have been 21 when this was taken. These girls were probably at least that age or older which would make any of them surviving today 100 years old or so.

It's a really new one

The pictured Olds is a 1940 model. Headlights seamlessly built into fenders and sculptured lines just above the front wheel cutouts are dead giveaways.

These are Mannequins

Almost had me fooled

You take the blonde...

and I'll take the one with the turban.

Beep Beep

Brand new and the horn button is already missing?

It ain't sold yet!

"Hey lady, don't get any cigarette burns on the upholstery!"

Room for One More?

Hubba hubba!

Plenty of Room Here!

I long for the days when you could get six people in one car without having to buy an SUV or a minivan. Bench seats man!!

Girls With Pluck

That is a shocking lack of real eyebrows there. I wonder how that trend started and when it ended. Not that it has, but I don't think you would find a whole car full of brows plucked that thin nowadays.

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