Time Warp Cinema: The View Through The Windshield Circa 1960


(first posted 4/2/2011)  Ever wonder what the view out the driver’s seat looked like fifty years ago, and not just the Hollywood version? Or maybe you’re old enough to remember, but just want to refresh the memory banks.

This film really takes me back, since we arrived in Iowa in 1960 from Austria. Made by the Iowa Transportation Dept., it points out the unsafe characteristics of some of the old stretches of Hwy. 30, then America’s primary cross-country highway (Interstate 80 was still several years in the future). This is how we crossed the country in 1960, sharing a roadway only 18 feet wide in places with trucks that could barely get out of their own way. Check out the typical 180 hp or so semi crawling up a modest little hill at about 12:40. No wonder the death rate has been plummeting since the interstates were built, along with safer cars, of course.

It’s wall-to-wall Curbside Classics, including a few “exotic” imports in Iowa then (Fiat 1100 at 6:00 and Opel Rekord at 6:40), and some nice car carriers loaded with new Ramblers and 1960 Cadillacs. Well worth the twelve minutes.

HwyRelocation from Iowa DOT on Vimeo.