On This Day in History, January 23: 2-Car Family Gains Ground

January 23, 2012 Brooklyn Eagle Staff
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The Jan. 23, 1927, Sunday edition of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle published the friendly faces of a dozen Brooklyn car dealers who were showing cars at the 258th Field Artillery Armory. Does anyone remember the Locomobile, the Star, or the Chandler?


The article shared a concern that other members of the one-car family were deprived when the car was being utilized by Dad: “So when the wife and daughter — not to speak of Junior — are deprived of the use of the car, when it is in service at the office, the family is handicapped economically and socially.” 


The column went on to say about the up-and-coming two-car family: “At any rate it is here and America is better for it. The two-car garage, now almost invariably being constructed with modern homes, is a striking evidence of this fact.”


On the page was a photo of a Chrysler “70” Roadster with two people up front and two passengers in the rumble seat, which opened like a car trunk in reverse. They do look a bit cramped, and what if it rains? (The top only went up over the front seat.) Chrysler claimed it gave “ample space for two, besides giving space for luggage.” We should hope not all on the same trip. But rumble seats were a great place for cuddling. With two in the rumble, the limited space made cuddling necessary under any circumstances.


The 1927 Whippet, it was reported, was showing special appeal to women — and budget-minded ones, for it had “ability to travel up to 30 miles to a gallon of fuel.” Willys-Overland claimed its Whippet was lighter and easier to handle by the ladies, plus it had four-wheel brakes in case a lady changed her mind and wanted to make a sudden stop. It was also attractively streamlined and in smart colors.

Franklin boasted of its “lowest” car: “A man of average height, standing on the curb, can easily rest his elbows on the roof of the new Franklin tandem sport — the lowest car at the show. This car measures only 65 inches from the roof to the ground.”

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