Crosleys When They Were Just Odd

Crosleys have always been a bit odd compared to the main stream car industry, but now they are also collectable and that makes them a bit more acceptable. These pictures were all taken when the Crosley was just odd and only a handful of people liked odd enough to keep them from all being turned in to lawn tractors and home made trailers.

The 1948 Crosley Station Wagon belonged to The Lancers Car Club in 1963.  They were racing Ricky Scerbo from Boonton, NJ.  Here is a not from the the president of the club at the time of tthe photo.

We had a car club The LANCERS, that turned into drag racing, cause it was too expensive to build a custom car back in 1960. The drive train was 48 Ford set on a Model A ford chassis which we had first, and then built the Crosley Wagon. Bought the bare body from a guy, Harry Fister, who had ARCO station in Caldwell, NJ. The picture on the Internet was taken at Island Dragway, Great Meadows, NJ. The car ran some slower times in the 14.00 and 13.00, in D/A altered. Had a ton of fun and won many thropies and some competition eliminators cause everyone else went home and the four of us stayed around to enjoy the drag racing. It is great to see it on the Crosley Website for the world to see.

The Lancers Car Club - Singac, NJ - Bob Fomen - President 1962 to 1967

Wayne Hermann's '48 wagon. The picture was taken in about 1961.

1950 with Wayne Hermann's head on the roof. Actually he was standing behind it. It could be a '49, it had drum brakes. This was taken about '51.

Wayne Herman's '50 wagon taken about 1960.

Wayne Hermann spotted this Crosley on a ferry to Galveston, Texas in the summer of '51.

Wayne sent the following caption: The '48 with the anti-fog things in the windshield was mine. These pictures were taken in Racine, Wisconsin in the late 50s. The brown 47 sedan with whitewalls was my brothers and the other three belonged to a fellow named Clarence Peterson. The 47 sedan on the right was painted up to be "The Purple People Eater". It was used in parades. It had a big chrome horn on the top and an eye painted on the hood. Of course, it was purple. Yes that's a panel delivery in the middle.

This is another picture of the row of Crosleys with the owners and their kids. Wayne is by the '48 and his son is on the "Purple People Eater".

A neighborhood commuter car in about 1966. Taken in Ohio. 1949 Sedan.

How to parallel park a Crosley, that's ye old web master closest to the camera. Maybe this is why I have back problems now. Picture taken around 1965 in Ohio. 1949 Sedan same as above.

This was the event we were parking the sedan for above. This is little Miss Liberty Center.

Street shot from McKeesport, PA Circa 1947

1948 Station Wagon parked in front of parts store, year unknown but would guess late 40s early 50s. Location unknown

CC Sedan on streets of Troy Alabama. From the looks of the other cars this was probably taken in late 40s early 50s also.

This picture of a 48 Convertible was taken in Miami,Fl. about 1950 or 51. Norman Naipavel supplied the picture. The woman is his mother Norma. The boat was his Dad's, Joseph (Smokey) Naipavel, who was very active in boat racing in the 50's and built some pretty hot Crosley engines.

The picture was taken in May 1948 at the start of the Alaska Highway in Dawson Creek, BC. Stan Smith drove it from Michigan to Alaska.

Picture is dated January 1954. Unknown beach, unknown driver. Not sure what the single port hole is for.

This is a 1950 Super Sports, the first year for the Super Sports and it was really only a deluxe Hot Shot with special trim and a folding top being the main difference

I have seen a picture of a place on the beach that rents Hot Shots, so this may be another shot from that business. This was a color post card but I only had a black & white copy. Some one got a good buy on Buick port holes.

How Greg wrote: "The Crosley Hotshot was rented and used on the beach at Daytona Beach in 1952. I rented and drove one."

Both of these beach photos may be from Daytona. If so I wonder how many VCs they had.

This was shot at a dealers lot in December 1948.

Another dealer lot in 1949.

Steven Helwig sent me this picture of his parents Mary Helwig and Art Helwig with Oren Standiford all of Cincinnati Ohio. Check out those fender skirts.

Sid Sims at age 14 in 1953. He is standing beside his first car, looks like a 48 Sport Utility. The picture was taken in Houston, Texas.

Sid is looking for another Crosley to relive his youth, He is still in the Houston area.

Not sure where I got this photo. It was in my files dated August 1963. The Ohio plates are from Henry County where I grew up and 1963 was the year I got started in Crosleys. The wagon was being used as part of a rubber stamp making business.

This is another photo from my files. It has been pointed out that the sign in the background is in Japaneese so it is likely taken in Japan. The lettering on the side is readable if you know the language.

It has been verified by a Chinese professor and his Japanese friend that the four dots at the left are a Chinese symbol, too old for them to know.  The next three characters are Japanese indicating some sort of commercial enterprise.  The final two symols are pictographs indicating buildings.  The second line is the company's telephone number.

Any additional help or information would be appreciated.

Don't know much other than it says Charlestown, Indiana and from the other cars on the street I would guess the CC Sedan was nearly new.

Dealer getting some publicity

You scream I scream we all scream for Ice Cream


Mike Bullard sent me this picture, here is his words.  "The people in the picture are myself , my brother, sister and of course, Dad. Leonard Barefoot Bullard born April 10, 1921 to May 17, 2003. In his younger years he was known for being a rowdy fiddle player, ladies man and auto mechanic. He worked on cars after he came back from the war that included people like Werner Von Braun and others. This was back in the late 50's and 60's and no one else around Huntsville knew how to work on the German Imports. Lets just say that he could fix anything except for the heart, but he could make that feel better. As far as the Crosley in the picture goes it is one called the Shingle (I think). Dad built several different chassis and body combinations while being aided by some of NASA's top engineers of the time. He never raced them due to his size but loved to see someone else drive his. But that was long ago and
stories change as the years go by. So to give this picture some real story you only have to look into the eyes of the kids in the Crosley and see their joy but to look at the eyes of my father you see a proud Dad.
For he was my father, my teacher and my best friend."

Picture of NASCAR legend Harry Hyde in his first race car in the 50's. He only drove for a while and decided he was not a driver and started building cars for others to drive.  Just a great picture.


These three shots were taken in 1964.  This is Dave Sherman's 1947 Roundside.  Dave was my best friend all through high school and we got in a lot of trouble in this truck.  Our last ride was after we rolled it back on its wheels after doing a 3/4 roll in the back of a cemetery. Dave and I were together at the 2003 Nationals and were reunited with this roundside, now owned by Jim Oliver of NY.  It is now all restored and looking better than it ever was. Jim learned more about the history of his truck than he was expecting or maybe wanted to know.

Photo sent by Gary Foster - This is a picture of a friend next to his father's bosses Crosley around 1941.

The friend described above, saw his picture and send more and corrected information. The young boy is Bill Schulz and he is pretending to chauffer his sister Ann. The  two pix are of his Grandfather's ex-boss's '41. This was shot at Mr. Kemp's (boss) place on Lake St. George in Liberty, ME, in either 1943 or '44.

John Heipley's Custom Hot Shot (yes Hot Shot) in 1954.  Read the whole story of its creation and travels. John has since sent this before picture of his Hot Shot, with three young sweet hearts in the passenger seat.  The one on the right is his daughter.  They are all in their 50s and 60s now.  Makes you feel old doesn't it.

Chuck Koehler found this photo.  Was told it was taken at Stadium Arena,  Grand Rapids, Michigan. The dark spots are people in the stands.

This one I found.  Don't know any details.  Looks like a 39 or maybe 40 Conv Coupe that had a bigger bumper added.  Trees in the background look like a warm climate like CA or FL.
Line up of SSs Here is a great picture taken on the Shirley Highway (I-95) in Virginia south of D.C. the summer of 1951.  Gary (no last name) sent me this picture and said it was "a photo of my cousin, a friend and myself in our Crosleys".  Looks like Two 1951 SuperSports and a 1950 SuperSports.  Nice seat covers in the 1950.
Pete Berard sent me this picture from 1959.  He said "this is a shot of my wife and I when we were dating in the late 50's. We could fill up the Hot Shot with $0.24 a gallon gas and get a dish, cup, or other kitchen ware free!".
Pete also sent me this picture he took of the his Hot Shot around 1951 or 52. He gave this information on the photo. "Notice the crumpled area forward and above the rear wheel? That's the reason my dad got the car. Someone gave the previous owner a love tap in the rear. Dad owned a body shop bought the car and had pulled the frame, but had not done the finish work. He couldn't get me out of the car long enough! Around 2 years prior, a neighbor was rebuilding a nearly new wrecked MG TD and I was forever smitten with small car fever. I felt I was the coolest cat in town in the Hot Shot.  My baby sister is seen in the drivers seat. Behind the car from L to R is Happy (dog on hood) Aunt Mae Berard, (Uncle Bill's wife) Aunt Mae Berard, (father's sister), Uncle Bill Berard, my dad Maurice Berard, and in the fore front, my mom Nellie. This shot was taken with an Ansco camera that I made from a card board kit that came as a flat, creased, prefabbed with tape and necessary simple mechanism to wind the film."

David Motz of California sent this Crosley photo, he describes the time and location.

"In September of 1961, I rode the Alaska Railroad from Anchorage to Fairbanks and this picture was taken when the train stopped at Nenana.
 
The vehicle at the right is unmistakably a Crosley wagon."

The following four photos were sent to us by Mark and Frank Beacon from the estate of Lloyd Texley in Nebraska.

Following WWII, aircraft mechanic Charles Lincoln Nicholas returned to his hometown of Fairmont and subsequently opened a Crosley repair shop and then dealership (left photo). Later he moved into a building he shared with the Peck Brothers at 1419 East Blue Earth Avenue (right photo).


Charles and Ruby Nicholas and their highly customized Crosley Sedan in Fairmont, MN around 1950.

Murray Mill of Calgary, AB Canada writes - "This is how it all started for me!!  My Uncle (Ernie Bird) purchased a 1947 Crosley Sedan in 1949 and used it everyday for several years. The picture was taken on the family farm, located at Eagle Hill, Alberta, Canada circa 1949. From as young as I can remember I heard all the stories about this Crosley car.  I spent some time one summer going through the scrap pile on the Eagle Hill farm. Wouldn’t you know it, I found the Crosley engine, heater, etc.  This really got me fired up at the age of 19 and I began to search for the body and chassis. I learned it had been sold to another local farmer. Yes, I went to that farm and his widow showed me the only place she knew it might be. As I kicked through the grass, I caught my foot on a front Crosley motor mount. This was all that was left, I latter found they had sold the running gear to another local ranch to be used as a trailer. My search continues for my uncles 47 CC Sedan!"

Check out the roof mounted spot light, front and rear defrosters and the wind wings.


The next series of seven pictures were sent in by Joe Kaczmar from his Uncle Ronnie's photo albums.

The first two were taken in Dearborn, MI in June of 1958.

"My uncle had purchased his first Crosley the previous year.  In the first photo, Ronnie
Kaczmar is pictured on the right.   In the second photo, Ronnie is on the left."

"This is my uncle Ronnie Kaczmar in front of his 1948 Station wagon.

Ronnie would have been about 15 at the time. The photo was taken in 1957 at
the Kaczmar family home in Dearborn Michigan.  Ronnie had just gotten his
first car which my father still owns.  The car is still located in the
garage shown in the background."

"This is my father Jim Kaczmar (right) and my uncle Ronnie Kaczmar (left) in front of a Crosley. The photo was taken in 1957 at the family home in Dearborn Michigan."

"My father (Jim Kaczmar, right) and his friend (Doug Johnson, left).  Standing by my dad's first car.   This was taken in 1963."

Interesting trailer, taken in 1967 probably in Florida.

"This was taken in 1968.  This "blue and white" Crosley has been to the continuous 48 states.  Ron Kaczmar drove this car to the most of the states with my Grandfather, Walter over the years.  Ronnie visited the remaining states with his friend Jean in 1992.  Visiting the missing states included a 6000+ mile trip from Dearborn, Michigan through Seattle Washington, to Long Beach California.  My uncle and Grandparents would often take Crosleys on long trips, including this trip to Florida from Dearborn, Michigan."

"Found this old picture of my dad and his Crosley Hot Shot.  Picture  was taken in Searcy, Ark. in front of my grandpa's place.  Dad was a Chief Petty Officer stationed at the Millington, Tn  Naval Air Station.  He and my mother would travel on the weekend  to Searcy to visit my Grandpa in Searcy Ark.  The Hot Shot was dad's first automobile following 16 years of sea duty.  He spoke of it often and fondly. - CMSgt David W. Willingham
So how did Mike Banks, one of the authors of the Crosley: Two Brothers and a Business Empire That Transformed the Nation, get interested in Crosleys.

"When I was four years old I would walk to the neighbor's driveway and spin the propeller on the Crosley wagon he owned.  This gentleman, Jack Griswold, who owned a total of 16 Crosleys during the 1940s and 1950s, is still with us, now in Margate Florida, sent photos of his Crosleys (including 2 Hotshots), and the actual car that was my first memory of Crosley!  This photo was taken in 1955." --Mike

Now you know the rest of the story.


If you have photos that you would like to add to this page send them to me and if I think they fit the spirit of the page, I'll add them in. I'm picking 1969 as the cut off date for when the picture was taken. In 1969 the Crosley Automobile Club was formed and Crosleys officially became a collectors item.

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