We can assume that this 1950 Plymouth and trailer didn’t crash into the ’55 Olds at the bottom of this icy hill. Stopping this rig is one thing, making it move is another. The 217.8 CID six was rated at 97 (gross) hp. If it had Fluid Drive, about fifteen of those were lost in translation. But they made it; this is a snapshot of moving day day from a family leaving Arlington VA. and heading to West Palm Beach FL. Easy does it!
image source: shorpy.com
At least they were headed in the right direction (escaping winter). Do you think they drove south strictly via downhill roadways???? I’m about to make a similar move and thank Jeebus that I don’t have to seek a trailer rig like this one.
Not that driving a 26 ft. box truck will be any more fun. By the way, next to your site, Shorpy is a not so distance second. Love it to death!
Just discovered it…the trick is not to get lost there though. I love old photos.
I’ll take that dark blue ’49-’51 Mercury 2-door in the parking lot of the cleaners!
I know its later and the car is the wrong make, but somehow I imagine the family from “A Christmas Story” moving with this sort of rig.
“Sick of Northern Indiana winters, the Old Man eventually sought out the warmth of Florida and kissed Hammond good bye…he even converted from Oldsmobile to Plymouth.”
It is my recall (although I am open to correction) that you had to move up to a Dodge to get the Fluid Drive at that time. Actually, I would think that the Fluid Drive would be a help at standing starts. It was probably mighty easy to kill the little Plymouth 6 when letting the clutch out with that big trailer attached.
Upon reflection, this guy had a 12 hp advantage on my grandparents who hauled farm wagons with an 85 hp ’35 Ford V8
I threw that in there about the Fluid Drive without any real thought. I defer to your better knowledge on the subject, and won’t even spend the minute or two to look it up 🙂
The red ’55 Merc convertible behind the 2-door for me! And I don’t imagine the family from “A Christmas Story” moving at all, not even after Pop retired and the kids had moved out.
I’ll bet that heavily loaded Plymmie was a 45-mph obstruction to traffic all the way down the east coast.
A strong candidate for the red/orange triangle.
You’re going to make me crazy trying to track down the location of this photo. It looks like it’s in North Arlington along Rte. 29, where most of the housing and retail still dates back to that era, so it should be findable.
There’s a short stretch of Rte. 29 that’s called “Old Dominion Dr,” which is a logical location for “Old Dominion Cleaners,” but I can’t find this spot using Google Maps photos. There is an Old Dominion Cleaners in that general neighborhood today, but it’s in a different building. And the name might be a red herring. “Old Dominion” is the nickname of the whole stinkin’ state, after all.
I think I’ll print out the picture and put it on the passenger seat of my car. Otherwise I may spend the rest of my afternoon virtually inching up & down Lee Hwy. on Google Maps.
Curse you for planting the seed for this obsession.
Just follow the shorpy.com link at the bottom of the post; others have already identified it and gone back and done updated shots of the same spot.
Duh. Scroll down. Thanks.
Oddly enough, it’s right where I thought it might be. Old Dominion Cleaners hasn’t moved after all these years, after all. It’s just that the perspective from the Google Maps photos makes it hard to tell its the same place.
I lived for a time in south Arlington (late 70s – early 80s), and I thought the photo might be of Route 29/Lee Highway.
Shorpy is famous for those high-resolution photos of days gone by.
The California plate on the trailer reminds me that there were already several trailer-rental outfits in the mid-50’s, and that they were truly national. I found the U-Haul place in Des Moines, Iowa, when I was going to college in 1958, made friends with a guy there, and ended up getting trailer license plates from 20 or 25 different states.
jeez paul, i already spend to much time on this site and now you have to provide a link to shorpy. there’s no chance that i will accomplish anything today!
Fortunately for my productivity, but unfortunately for my curiosity, my employer has blocked shorpy as a “blog” and I can’t access it directly from work.