posted by Stephen Pellegrino (Poindexter). It’s a promotional shot for last year’s EyesOn Design fundraiser.
Asa child growing up, on rare occasions, I would see of these in black cruising by in stately elegance; and I instinctively KNEW that the occupants were people of substance!
This Cadillac had PRESENCE in spades, unlike the confused wannabe BMW offerings of today!
Well, people with a lot of money anyway.
I have no idea why, but I have an unnatural affection for the 58 Cadillac. Really, it is the only Cadillac from the late 50s I like. This gray paint does very nice things for the car. And my but that’s a lot of brightwork, but this car wears it better than the other overtrimmed 58s from Harley Earl’s studios.
Well, if one considers the brightwork as jewelry, which is not a stretch, then it would make sense that a fully loaded Cadillac would be dripping with jewelry when going out for the evening. While we don’t generally dress up for occasions like we did back then, it was not uncommon for any event to have attendees dressed to the nines.
But, like jewelry, there is an old rule that Mothers often gave to their daughters.
Put on all the jewelry you think works with the outfit, then take one piece off. This car seems to follow that rule. Lots of brightwork, but enough restraint so as not to be overbearing.
As originally envisioned by Harley Earl, the 1958 Cadillac was to sport even more exterior chrome. Head stylist Ed Glowacke managed to remove some of the planned exterior trim at the last minute.
The only piece of jewellery my eyeballs would really have issue with is the faux-scoop thingy in front of the front wheels. Maybe Ed left that on so Harley wouldn’t think he’d totally undressed it? 🙂
For a minute there, I thought this photo was from a vintage ad. Even the color palette of the overall image says this was taken in 1958.
This is the year I was born, IKE was in office, and this is the most signification recession since WWII due to folks holding onto their cars longer than usual which hit Detroit especially hard. Yet, the recession was over by the end of the year.
Lets hope 2020 ends with the same rebound!!
“Yet, the recession was over by the end of the year.”
I would agree in a technical sense, but 1959-61 or 62 was not a terribly strong economy. It was better than 1958 but things didn’t really get rolling until 1963 or 64. My neighborhood was built out in those years. Unlike a lot of older or newer areas where the houses were all built within a 2-3 year period, my neighborhood saw the first houses built in 1957 and the last in 1963-64, so a 6-7 year period before things were built out in an upper-middle class area of custom homes, and even then there were a handful of lots that weren’t finished until the 70s.
While in office, Kennedy realized the economy wasn’t moving fast enough for his potential re-election. Therefore, he reduced certain taxes in order to grease the economy which is why ’63-’64 were better. Also, Pentagon spending was on the rise due to the involvement in Indochina and Johnson’s great society spending pushed the economy forward till the ’70 recession.
My house will built in late ’68 and my neighborhood reflects a pause in building in ’70 and rebound in “71 till the oil shock of ’73 when the economy cooled down.
Hard to believe that interest rates today are less than in ’58. I laugh when my nephews moan about the current APR rates below 3%. I tell them “LOCK IN NOW” before the rate rises again.
I tell them “LOCK IN NOW” before the rate rises again.
Hopefully, maybe. In Europe, they have negative rate mortgages.
Great picture that really could have been taken in 1958. L.L. Bean himself had a 1958 Cadillac Sixty Special. It’s still around last I knew.
In the same setup 62 years from today, a woman in pants, knit sweater, and fashion sneakers would be standing next to a Cadillac Escalade in black or dark blue. In the background would be a geometric style house in monochrome colors.
The irony of a Cadillac (and not a Lincoln) at the Edsel and Eleanor Ford house was not wasted on me. Stupendous shot, though.
There has to be an amusing story behind this “middle finger” to the Ford’s…hard to believe it was by accident.
I thought this photo was from the ’50s; it had me totally fooled. Except that it was a Cadillac in front of a Ford home, and that made it suspicious to me. Something about the manners of the day suggested that such a thing would not have been done, out of simple courtesy.
Lovely car, from when a Cadillac really meant something. It’s a crying shame how they so debased the brand such nowadays it’s a positive liability, that takes some doing.
Udderly gorgeous. I love 50’s Cadillacs. A LOT!
A Freudian slip perhaps, in honor of the era’s Dagmar bumpers?
A Freudian slip perhaps, but tits allright.
Thanks to CC, I now know the color of my great uncle’s 58 Fleetwood Sixty Special! It was his first Cadillac, purchased around 1960 in great condition and low miles from an estate sale. What a majestic car — it was my first experience with power windows (including the front ventipanes), power locks, power front seat, and wonder of wonders — A/C! Two of my aunts used the car as their wedding limousine.
This is an outstanding photo — I think I could admire it all day.
I don’t know how I’ve managed to miss this all these years, but the rear clip of the ’58 Caddy prefigures the likewise of the ’59 with its over-the-top fins and bullet tail lights.
When I see a car swooping down an entrance ramp onto the expressway in front of me, I try to imagine it having this type of styling and feeling a bit overwhelmed trying to. I just cannot imagine such a thing. The idea that a car would need these kinds of rear fenders seems so ridiculous.
The fact that 60 years ago these types of cars were on the road is quite a thought. They are to 2020 what a horse buggy was to drivers in 1958. To me, we’ve reached a point where this era seems as strange as a Dragnet episode. The older these cars become, the stranger they appear.
What distinguishes them from other vehicles is what distinguishes a suit of clothes from a suit of armor with a giant codpiece attached to it. The plumage of a rooster at least serves a purpose. It is Auto Baroque styling. It is what it is for no other purpose than it could be done. Hundreds of pounds of useless weight, it is like decorating an elephant for an Indian wedding, to the point where the animal collapses. People paid for this?
This is what makes them special. Like a tattooed lady wearing a Viking outfit at a funeral.
We live in an equally foolish Era. This Cadillac was a lightweight compared to many of today’s soccer mom trucks that have off road capabilities that will never be utilized. The 58 looked like it could fly to the moon. The new Escalade looks like it could scale a mountain trail. Let’s face it. Neither of them will ever do it. Oh by the way, I’d like to see that tattooed lady wearing a Viking outfit at a funeral.
The ’57 and ’58 didn’t impress me then, and still don’t. Caddy had reached a peak of impressiveness in ’56, and then decided to look like a Chevy with weak springs. Lincoln finally achieved proper mass without plagiarism in ’57, and could have pressed the advantage in ’58 by simply continuing the same design. Instead, they spoiled it.
A favorite uncle had one of these in powder blue. Loaded, including factory A/C. I recall those huge rear fenders and chrome everywhere. I think my aunt was the impetus behind its purchase, and she loved being driven to church and around town in it. Don’t think my uncle, a no nonsense WWII vet, really cared for it. In 1962 it mysteriously disappeared, replaced by a stripper 6 cylinder Biscayne wagon, whose only option was a radio. Never got the full story on why this happened, and the Caddy was seldom mentioned again.
There is a lot of brightwork on all ’58 GM products, too much in my opinion. The ’56 was the last of the kicked up tail light tail fins series and of the Flying Goddess mascot. The ’57 had the forward slanting, squared off fin, my favorite, especially combined with the basket handle rear window and trimmer appearance. It sported a dual dorsal fin hood ornament. I had both a ’57 and later a ’56. The ’57 also had a flat decklid, and hood that was the same level as the front fenders, though the center section got raised again starting in 1965. There were cleaner lines on the ’59 and ’60s but those exaggerated fins! A fun and interesting time for styling but good taste was forgotten until Lincoln brought it back in 1961.
The businessman to the left very much looks the part of the “Man in the Gray Flannel Suit” with Gregory Peck.
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