Old News Articles Research Archives

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1953 Photo and Article from a Jeep Playday

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old News Articles, Racing

This photo and article appeared in the July 09, 1973, issue of the Longview Daily News. I don’t remember the Road Rebels Jeep Club nor can I remember its insignia. The tow bar on the front suggests this jeep was likely a trail and race jeep, if not also a road jeep. It was common to see the family jeep show up at races into the early 1980s. It doesn’t take too many breakdowns of the family jeep while racing to convince owners to build race-only jeeps.
Clipping from Longview Daily News - Newspapers.com

“A hearty crowd turned out for the Jeep Play Day put on by the Road Rebels Jeep Club this weekend in conjunction with Kelso’s Hilander Summer Festival. The unidentified driver has all four wheels slinging mud, sand and water during his run over the course. Photographer Dave Fox captured the action with a camera setting of f16 at 500th of a second, which is considerably slower than the speed he used to get out of the way.”

Clipping from Longview Daily News - Newspapers.com

 
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Spokane’s Sandifur Motors Willys Distributor

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images, Old News Articles

UPDATE: Additional content has been added about Sandifur Motors.

Originally established in 1937, the Sandifur Motor Company out of Spokane, Washington, was operated by Charles and C. Paul Sandifur. Brothers and business partners, by 1938 the two men were involved in taxi cabs, used cars, life Insurance, and other business pursuits in the Spokane region.

The Sandifurs became a Willys distributor in the autumn of 1945 soon after the launch of the CJ-2A. An ad in the October 21, 1945, issue of the Spokesman Review confirms this.

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October 21, 1945, ad published in the Spokesman Review

As best as I understand it, being a distributor meant Sandifur Motors could both sell jeeps and signup other dealers.

The company seems to have followed the standard line of advertising, as this 1947 farming ad shows:

Clipping from The Spokesman-Review - Newspapers.com

As we’ll see in a moment, Sandifur was successful at selling jeeps, but I can’t imagine CJ-2A was very practical for farming in the Spokane region, in part due to the size of the farms. For example, my maternal grandparents obtained a 160 acre farm 35 miles southeast of Spokane on the small banks of Fighting Creek, Idaho, a place they won in a lottery around 1910, then secured by homesteading. In the 1920s they founded the local Fighting Creek store and operated one of the first phones in the area (we still have some of the books that documented the calls). They also made money logging the local forest and, after WWII, electrifying the area. Had they thought a jeep was practical, I believe they could have afforded to purchase one. Instead, they preferred to use tractors.

My family’s decision to abstain from buying a jeep did little to slow the success of Sandifur Motors. It’s possible the company was doing better selling wagons and trucks versus CJ-2As. I could imagine four wheel drive versions of the trucks and wagons being very handy navigating the endless forests and deserts of the Inland Empire area. This may also explain why both long-wheel base CJ-2As (likely the CJ-2Ls) and CJ-2As with 6ft extended beds were available for sale from both Spokane and Montana dealers (more on this in an upcoming post).

Here’s a 1949 ad promoting the wagon:

Clipping from The Spokesman-Review - Newspapers.com

October 17, 1949, Spokesman Review

Whatever the company was selling, it was selling enough of them to justify new digs. In early 1951, the Willys dealer moved from its original location at W419 3rd Avenue, to W228 2nd Avenue in downtown Spokane:

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February 27, 1951, in The Spokesman Review

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1949 Article on the Jeep’s Forest Fire Fighting Potential

(Given fireworks have arrived, this article seemed appropriate …) This August 07, 1949, article was published in the Spokesman Review out of Spokane, Washington, but it likely originated from a Wisconsin news report. The article mentions Nicolet National Forest, which is located in Northern Wisconsin, and the event was sponsored by E. W. Schwartz Motors out of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. One interesting statistic noted was that conservative estimates put the number of jeeps in service in state and national forests at over 1,000 jeeps by the summer of 1949.

1949-08-07-spokesman-review-fire-fighters-light-artillery-article-lores

 
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October 1960 New Redlands Geckos Jeep Club Article

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images Jeeping, Old News Articles

This October 16, 1960, article introduced the Redlands Geckos Jeep Club out of Redlands, Calfiornia.

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1957 Hemet Jeep Cavalcade Article

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images Jeeping, Old News Articles

This article and photo appeared in the April 07, 1957, issue of the San Bernardino County Sun. The two jeeps shown are part of the 14-member Rialto Sidewinders Jeep Club. The two men pictured are W. H. Casaday(seated) and Bill Deal.

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Early Documented Post War Jeep Races

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images, Old News Articles • TAGS: .

Doing some random searches, I learned that during the summer of 1946 several jeep races popped up across the country. One of them was very organized (#2), one was more of a performance (#1), one was impromptu (#4), and one provided no additional information (#3)

  1. On the night of June 1, 1946, in Ogden, Utah, jeep races and jeep-jumps-jeep events were planned by the local American Legion, along with other event. The jeep events were part of Lt. Dick Ryan’s traveling jeep rodeo, so I’d argue they were more of a performance than an organic race. (Ogden Standard-Examiner, June 1, 1946).
  2. A mid August 1946 five-mile jeep race for veterans was organized for the Plumas County Fair in California. Only standard jeeps and qualified WWII veterans could participate. Four jeeps were entered, with Clayt Joslin of Quincy  winning the event (As reported in the Feather River Bulletin August 22, 1946). First prize was $100, while second price was $50 (Indian Valley Record, Greenville, California, August 1, 1946).
  3. Around September 14, an impromptu jeep race was held at the West Tennessee District Fair. It was organized by folks were were driving jeeps that were servicing the race track for the fair (The Jackson Sun September 15, 1946).
  4. In October, jeep race(s) were held on October 04, 1946, at the Montana Youth Fair, in Kalispell, Montana. I could find no results or more information. (The Daily Inter Lake October 01, 1946, Kalispell, Montana)

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In unrelated news from 1953, this Yakima Ridgerunners photo hit some newspapers across the country. The example below was published in the June 24, 1953, issue of the Spokesman-Review, out of Spokane, Washington. Chet Thompson and Wally Klingele, both names synonymous with the early days of the Ridgerunners, are shown practice-racing for a July 4th event.

1953-06-24-spokane-review-yakima-ridgerunners-photo-lores

 

 
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June 1946 Article on the 30,000 Jeep Produced

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old News Articles

This short article appeared in the June 24, 1946, issue of the Daily Times out of New Philadelphia, Ohio. I assume that the 30,000 production number relates to CJ-2As. Interestingly, 35% of jeeps were for ‘agricultural’ uses while 43% were heading to ‘industry’. The remaining 22% fell under the ‘miscellaneous’ category.

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Some Zamboni Articles with Photos

• CATEGORIES: Old Images, Old News Articles • TAGS: .

The threes article and photos appeared over a series of years. Each shows a different model of the Zamboni Ice Resurfacer. You can learn more about the jeep-chassis models in this post.

MODEL E CJ-3B Version: Based on the ice-delivery-chain-system design on the front, I’d say this is a CJ-3B version of Model E. You can learn more about the CJ-3B versions here.

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December 09, 1956, Boston Sunday Globe.

MODEL E CJ-5 Version: This model was the last one to include the jeep body, in this case a CJ-5 body.

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March 09, 1955, The Gazette out of Montreal, Canada.

MODEL F: This photo and caption shows a good example of the final jeep-related Zamoni Ice Resurfacer.

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December 06, 1957, The Record-Argus out of Greenville, Pennsylvania.

 
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1955-1956 News Articles About Operation Pineapple

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images Jeeping, Old News Articles • TAGS: , .

Just this update for Tuesday.

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April 22, 1956, Los Angeles Times. Strangely, this photo was published months after arriving in Los Angeles (they were likely here in late December 1955 or early January of 1956). See map below.

Mapa

The trio began and ended their trip in San Paulo, Brazil. This map shows that they passed Los Angeles on their way home, then headed east towards New Orleans, the trio’s last stop in the United States.

Most folks are already familiar with this trip, but I wanted to add these news reports to the database of Operation Pineapple information. One of the articles noted that the three travelers did not try an American hamburger, because hamburger was fed to dogs in Brazil.

This first article was published shortly after Jan Stekly arrived in New Orleans, because he wasn’t allowed to travel through Mexico. It was published in the August 11, 1955, issue of the Shreveport Journal:

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August 11, 1955, issue of the Shreveport Journal. Jan Stekly is shown in the photo.

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1945 Article on the Jeep Demonstration

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images, Old News Articles

A July 19, 1945, article in the Dayton Herald, out of Dayton, Ohio, covered the jeep demonstration at Charles Sorensen’s farm. Two things about the article stuck out to me. 1) I was surprised to learn that there had been no sales price shared with reports as of the demonstration. 2) The reporter who wrote the article noted that the most interesting piece of equipment was the John Bean Haymaker, which apparently never became a Willys-Overland Special Equipment item, at least not one of which I’m aware. I did find a brochure from a few years later that covered the John Bean Haymaker (see the cover at the bottom of this post).

1945-07-19-dayton-herald-oh-new-farm-jeep-does-its-tricks-lores

July 19, 1945, Dayton Herald out of Dayton, Ohio.

What the above article doesn’t mention is that Willys-Overland had hoped to build 20,000 jeeps over the remainder of 1945, at least according to an article in the Cincinnati Enquirer on July 18th:

1945-07-18-news-messenger-fremont-oh-new-jeep-20000-1945-lores

July 18, 1945, News Messenger out of Fremont, Ohio.

So, why wasn’t the company able to see the 20,000 production figure and instead produced only 1824 CJ-2As? One big factor was that Warner Gear had gone on strike for 12 weeks, stopping production of transmissions that Willys-Overland needed to complete the jeeps. There were probably other reasons as well, but had W-O been able to produce over those 12 weeks what they subsequently manufactured throughout 1946, the company could have come very close to the 20,000 production figure for 1945. In other words, there likely would have been a lot more VECs!

1945-12-22-daily-times-new-philadlephia-oh-strike-halts-jeep-production

December 22, 1945, Daily Times out of New Philadelphia, Ohio.

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October 1956 Article Introducing the Jeep Dispatcher

• CATEGORIES: DJ-3A, Features, Old Images, Old News Articles

This article appeared in the Miami News on October 09, 1956. That seemed a late date for an “introductory” announcement. The article highlighted the low operating cost, the 30,000 mile maintenance guarantee, the four body styles, and the wide range of duties the new jeep could perform.

1956-10-0-the-miami-news-dj3a-dispatcher-article-lores

 
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January 1956 DJ-3A Jeep Dispatcher Introduction

• CATEGORIES: DJ-3A, Features, Old Images, Old News Articles

The article suggests that the Jeep Dispatcher only came in three models, with one listed as a “basic model with or without a top”. The marketing department must have decided that the single model with or without a top was better off as two models distinct models.

1956-01-20-pittsburgh-sun-telegraph-dispatcher-dj3a-article-lores

January 20, 1956, Pittsburgh Sun Telegraph

On the same page as the Dispatcher article was an ad for multiple jeep dealers in the Pittsburgh area. The new ad included the DJ-3A with the fiberglass-reinforced hardtop.

1956-01-20-pittsburgh-sun-telegraph-jeep-ad-lores

January 20, 1956, Pittsburgh Sun Telegraph

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1959 Hemet De Anza Borrego Cavalcade

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images, Old Images Jeeping, Old News Articles • TAGS: .

1959 marked the 11th annual Hemet to Borrego via De Anza trail Cavalcade. That year over 400 vehicles joined the adventure. The author and photographer of the below article, Del Schrader, was transported over the trail via two German DKWs. The article was published in the March 22, 1959, issue of the Los Angeles Times.

1959-03-22-los-angeles-times-boreggo-calvacade-lores

 
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1961 Motor Trend Article on the New CJ-5

• CATEGORIES: Features, Magazine, Old News Articles

Bob Ames, the author of this September 1961 article in Motor Trend, described his time in a CJ-5 as a “rump” ride.

1961-09-motor-trend-driving-willys-cj5-1-lores 1961-09-motor-trend-driving-willys-cj5-2-lores

 
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1954 Jeep Calvcade Visits Austin, Texas

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images, Old News Articles • TAGS: .

Two articles in the Austin American shared the news, both with a photo,that a calvacade of jeeps would be visiting Austin, Texas, Calvacades were also planned around the world for 1954, with jeeps visit 25 countries outside the United States.

This first article appeared in the April 21, 1954, issue of the Austin American-Statesman and featured a CJ-3B fire jeep:

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This second article appeared in the April 22, 1954, issue of the Austin American-Statesman and featured a CJ-3B climbing a vertical wall:

1954-04-25-austin-american-texas-jeep-cavalcade-lores

 
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1952 Article “The World’s Most Versatile Car”

• CATEGORIES: Features, Magazine, Old Images, Old News Articles

In the January 14, 1952, Newsweek put out an article about the jeep’s versatility. There are some interesting tidbits, such as the Chinese’s nickname for the jeep was “the vehicle of 10,000 capabilities”. The jeep was used to spear barracudas in the Virgin islands, play tag in Yakima, ski via jeep-joring in New England and Ontario, Canada,, and in Burma it was claimed that a jeep was once used to pull an elephant’s tooth.

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1952-01-14-newsweek-worlds-most-versatile-car0-loresThis photo and caption was also included in a seemingly random area of the magazine, despite the fact that the same image appeared within the article.

1952-01-14-newsweek-worlds-most-versatile-car4-lores

 
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1941 Article Introducing the Air-Borne Battalion

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old News Articles

This September 18, 1941, article in the Petoskey News-Review introduced readers to the new Air-Borne Battalion. The new battalion would be trained in air landing operations and include two rifle companies. One of those two companies would be equipped with riflemen on bikes (40), motorcycles (140), and jeeps (105).

Clipping from Petoskey News-Review - Newspapers.com

 
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April 1960 Jeep News

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features, Old News Articles • TAGS: .

This issue of Jeep News is interesting in that the whole middle section focuses on the rise in jeep clubs. It isn’t an exhaustive list, but rather simply a list of clubs in contact with Jeep News, with a heavy emphasis on western clubs.

Note the CJ-6 hardtop on page 7. It’s a custom top built by Koenig. I don’t have it in my records, so keep a watch for it. It’s probably still out there somewhere, most likely still in Texas. Note also the scale model FC-170 giveaway and certificate with each FC-170 purchase on page 2.

Photos Photos Photos Photos Photos

 

 
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Introducing the Jeep Surrey

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images, Old News Articles • TAGS: .

UPDATE: Here are a couple more articles introduction the Jeep Surrey. The first one notes that women will like it for its fashion while men will like it for its fine engineering. I’m less convinced that the term ‘fine-engineering’ should be applied to any of the DJ-3As.

The second was widely disseminated in various arrangements and reminds us that A similar model, the “Jeep” Gala, was introduced to the export market early this year . This documents that the Gala was the export model and the Surrey the domestic model.

This first article was published October 08, 1959, and comes from Utah’s Orem-Geneva Times:

Clipping from Orem-Geneva Times - Newspapers.com

This October 04, 1959, article published in the Cincinnati Enquirer.

1959-10-04-cincinnati-enquirer-surrey-introduction-lores

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August 1962 Article on Hatari Dispatcher/Universal Tonka Toys

• CATEGORIES: DJ-3A, Features, Magazine, Old News Articles, toys • TAGS: .

As reported in this post, in 1962 the Tonka company launched the jeep models many of us owned as kids (and some of us still own as adults). It didn’t take long for Tonka to introduce specialized packaging as well. The August 1962 issue of Playthings Magazine highlighted three different Dispatcher Tonka Toys, with Hatari-themed boxes, that were for sale in the lobby of movie theaters while Hatari played in theatres.

View all the information on eBay

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The article appeared on this page:

1962-08-playthings-magazine-tonka-jeep-ad-hatari-full-page-lores

 
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1941 Article: Frank Fenn was the Real Jeep Father

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old News Articles

On June 24, 1941, a syndicated article claimed that friends of Ward Canaday said he was the father of the jeep:

1941-06-24-windsor-star-canaday-father-of-jeep

The Windsor Star out of Ontario, Canada, published this article blurb on June 24, 1941.

This news didn’t sit well with friends and former employees of Frank H. Fenn, President of the American Bantam Car Co. They wasted no time, quickly countering the notion that Canaday was the jeep’s father by explaining via telegrams why Fenn was the real father of the “Jeep”.

On June 27th, 1941, the Press and Sun-Bulletin published the responses in the following column.

Clipping from Press and Sun-Bulletin - Newspapers.com

And, just for fun, here’s another example of a Bantam BRC photo, taken less than a week after it arrived at Holabird. The first Bantam Scout Car wasn’t a secret for very long!

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Published by the Seminole Producer, Seminole, Oklahoma, October 07, 1940.

 

 
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Article and Photos of the Bantam T2E1

UPDATE: An article from 1941 appears to describe the T2E1 Bantams shown in photos below (a few more photos here also). The article describes the rifles as 47mm, while the photo captions correctly describe the rifle as a 37mm. Perhaps the difference is that the article was written in July, while the photos were taken late in August? So, maybe, 47mm rifles might have been initially considered? (47mm anti-tank guns were developed by France as early as 1931)

This article was published July 21, 1941, in the Lansing State Journal out of Michigan:

Clipping from Lansing State Journal - Newspapers.com

Posted August of 2018:

“1941 Press Photo John McCloy & C.M. Drury inspect a new gun mounted on a jeep. This is an original press photo. As the Army’s first “Tank killer” battalion showed off its new fighting technique today, John McCloy (left) assistant secretary of way, and C.M. Drury, assistant special weapons–A 37m. anti-tank gun mounted on the famed “jeep” reconnaissance car. U.S. Army land vehiclesPhoto measures 9.5 x 6.5inches. Photo is dated 08-27-1941.”

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1941-09-02-t21e2

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#2: Originally posted 05/08/2018

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Prototypes at Fort Custer, Michigan

Fort Custer, Michigan, appears to have been a testing ground for Ford and Willys prototypes. Along with the articles below, there are press photos posted from years passed. You’ll also note that some of the press photos have captions that are printed identically, but pencil-marked up differently. It’s possible someone was selling those as originals when they may not have been.

Here’s an article and a photo showing a couple Ford GPs being run hard, originally printed in the March 09, 1941, issue of the Battle Creek Enquirer:

1941-03-09-battle-creek-enquirer-fordgps-lores

Clipping from Battle Creek Enquirer - Newspapers.com

It didn’t take long for the offload vehicles to become a hit with soldiers. This article appears in the March 25, 1941, issue of the Detroit Free Press:

1941-03-25-detroit-free-press-jeep-testing

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And, just to set the record straight, at Fort Custer a jeep was a jeep and not a ‘peep’.

Clipping from Battle Creek Enquirer - Newspapers.com

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These press photos have been gathered from older posts. First, a couple Willys MA photos from eBay:

This was posted on ebay in June 2017: “1942 Photo WW2 Era Fort Custer MI Versatile Jeep Military Push Ball Game RareYou are bidding on an original Press Photo from a newspaper archive. The photograph measures 6×7 inches and is dated 9-25-1942.”

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1942-09-25-push-ball-game-willys-ma2

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1961 Willys Wagon Ad

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features, Old News Articles

This May 17, 1961, ad that appeared in the Boston Glove for the Jeep Wagon has art that feels more like a late 1940s ad than a 1960s ad. On the same  page as this ad was the photo at the bottom.

Clipping from The Boston Globe - Newspapers.com 1961-05-17-boston-globe-willys-jeep-wagon-photo

 
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Pike County Wagon Accident

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images, Old News Articles

I’m not sure where I found this newspaper clipping, but Herbert Obadda had a bad day. No dachshund puppies were injured as a result!

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