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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Remembering friends' cars, especially a little Crosley

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

In remembering past cars we have had, I began remembering some other cars that belonged to friends.

Back in the late 40s, after the World War II, many returning veterans went to school on the G.I. Bill. Many of them came to Fort Scott and went to our junior college, which at that time was in the high school building. Our town was abuzz with returning vets. A friend of ours, Bobby Jack Gregg, was one of those veterans.

He purchased a little car (and I mean little) that was called a Crosley, and it had a back seat. It was so small that four or five guys could pick it up and move it around. It could be driven on the sidewalk (not legally). It had a way of disappearing and reappearing in the strangest places.

One morning when we kids were arriving at school, lo and behold, there sat the Crosley between the columns to the entrance of the high school. It was sitting sideways; it couldn't go forward or backward or down the steps. It was really squeezed in there.

It was there for quite a while before the principal found someone to move it. I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that it didn't get there by itself. That dastardly deed was most assuredly done in the dead of night. No one was about to own up to it. We kids laughed ourselves silly.

Back then no one ever locked their cars. There really was no reason for it. And no one ever lost their keys as they were always in the ignition. So, that little Crosley really got around.

A classmate told me a story about the Crosley that happened to them. They had gone down to Pittsburg with another couple, and after arriving there, they saw Bobby Jack and his wife Dawn. They struck up a conversation and Bobby Jack said, "Why don't you two ride back to Fort Scott with us in our Crosley?" And they thought, why not? So they proceeded to climb and wiggle their way into the back seat, and by the time they were finally in, their knees were up to their chins. They looked and felt like twisted pretzels. If I remember, it must be 25 or 30 miles from Fort Scott to Pittsburg, so by the time they arrived home they could hardly stand up straight; and it was several days before they were back to normal.

Another car that comes to mind belonged to classmates and friends of ours, Betti and Gene Duvall.

They purchased a car that was a used 1947 Chrysler Town and Country convertible. It was red with brown wood and was truly a classic. It was the classiest car I had ever seen.

It originally belonged to Johnny Gross. They drove it for several years but finally decided it was time to get a new car, so they stored it in their garage, hoping that their daughter Tanya would like it. But Tanya's love was horses, and that's what she wanted rather than a car. So they finally decided to sell it. A man bought it and completely restored it.

I can see this series on cars has a ways to go yet.

More next week.

Marilyn Miller
The Old Grey Mare