Mar 11-12

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2012: March: Mar 11-12
Marketing 1920's style    ...scroll down to share comments
Scans from LOC
The Blessing    ...scroll down to share comments
Scan from Ginny Jamison
The Pitch    ...scroll down to share comments
Scans from LOC

Charlie at Pasty Central (Chopper) on Sunday, March 11, 2012 - 07:59 am:

Our Shoebox Memory this week is a pair of dusty old documents from early last century, with original credit going to the Master Mind group of Henry Ford, and the Daily Mining Gazette (passed along via Library of Congress and Michigan Tech Archives). The panorama on the main page is one I took last Sunday, where Phoenix Farms Road intersects with U.S. 41.

Phoenix was the site of the "Blessing of Automobiles" back in the 30's. We have no idea how long that tradition continued, or when it eventually became the "Blessing of the Pets" hosted by Keweenaw County Historical Society nowadays. The article appeared in "The Week That Was" series by the Gazette.

We had to laugh when reading the brochure. Henry Ford's clever marketing people make the case for it actually being unhealthy NOT to own a Ford. Just think about it... if there was a medicine or a treatment that would make you more healthy and productive, you would be irrational not to at least consider it. Especially if it made you enough more productive to pay for the treatment itself:

"Every day without a Ford means lost hours of healthy motoring pleasure... By stimulating good health and efficiency, owning a Ford increases your earning power."
We have way too much fun doing these Shoebox Memories every Sunday.

Have a good week :o)
Deb S. (Usedtobeayooper) on Sunday, March 11, 2012 - 08:12 am:

That's car blessing was a very interesting article. $295!! Holy smokes would that be nice:)

The same basic car these days will run 100 times that amount


Janie T. (Bobbysgirl) on Sunday, March 11, 2012 - 09:37 am:

and you can have any color so long as it is black........


JAD, Orgnst (Jandalq) on Sunday, March 11, 2012 - 09:46 am:

Gee whiz -- I figured I could today buy 75 gallons of gas for the cost of one 1920's Ford.

By RD, Iowa (Rdiowa) on Sunday, March 11, 2012 - 09:54 am:

It's hard to imagine 600 people in Phoenix Church!


dane l. christensen (Danech55) on Sunday, March 11, 2012 - 10:11 am:

They failed to mention the obvious health benefits of hand cranking the engine to start it-unless you want to spend an extra 85 bucks for a starter and "demountable rims" (what ever that means). Too funny.


J T (Jtinchicago) on Sunday, March 11, 2012 - 10:18 am:


The "Ford" statement comes from the book "My Life and Work" by Henry Ford (first) in collaboration with (author) Samuel Crowther (1926).

The book is about the worldwide success of the Model T. Explaining how the Ford Motor Company was able to sell a car and reduce the selling price each year from the first introduction of the Model T.

In the book Henry Ford is talking about Model T plant efficiencies and how dramatic the process cost affects the selling price of the vehicle. Black is the color of choice back then because in the 1920s black could be sprayed by anyone with any equipment and the paint job would still look good.

The 1920s oil based, enamel paint colors took more time to mix, match, spray and clean for the next color. Only the high end car companies had a limited number of color choices. The Model T was the first "starter" car, and Henry Ford was proud of that.

The actual Henry Ford // book quote is, "Any customer can have a car (Model T) painted any color that he wants so long as it is black."


Sign on US-41 at Alberta

Shirley Waggoner (Shirlohio) on Sunday, March 11, 2012 - 10:46 am:

I think my daddy owned one of those 'touring cars'....after that, he was strictly a Chevrolet owner.:)

By JH (Thumbgardener) on Sunday, March 11, 2012 - 01:22 pm:

Clyde Barrow was a fan of the Ford cars. It might have increased his earning power but I don't think it stimulated good health for him. :-)

Clyde Barrow and Bonnie Parker are infamous for their two-year crime spree from 1932 until their deaths in a hail of bullets in 1934. More amazing than his novice murders and robberies was Clyde's uncanny ability to evade the police even when he was surrounded.

Part of Clyde's ability to evade capture was in his skill as a driver, while the other part was most definitely in the choices of cars that he stole. Quite often, Clyde would be in a car that could out maneuver and out run any of the police cars that attempted to follow him.

Additionally, living a life on the run meant that Clyde and Bonnie spent days and even weeks at a time in their car while traveling long distances and sleeping in their car at night.

The car that Clyde preferred, one that offered both speed and comfort, was the Ford V-8. Clyde was so thankful for these cars that he wrote Henry Ford a letter in April 10, 1934.

The letter read:

Tulsa, Okla
10th April
Mr. Henry Ford
Detroit Mich.

Dear Sir: --
While I still have got breath in my lungs I will tell you what a dandy car you make. I have drove Fords exclusively when I could get away with one. For sustained speed and freedom from trouble the Ford has got ever other car skinned and even if my business hasen't been strickly legal it don't hurt anything to tell you what a fine car you got in the V8 --

Yours truly
Clyde Champion Barrow

Over the years, many have questioned the authenticity of Clyde's letter to Henry Ford, based on a discrepancy over handwriting. The letter is currently on display at the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan.
More infor here:

By Janie T. (Bobbysgirl) on Sunday, March 11, 2012 - 02:11 pm:

One of the first V-8 Flathead engine.

By Janie T. (Bobbysgirl) on Sunday, March 11, 2012 - 02:39 pm:

I love the stories and tales of the gangsters in the 30's. In 1934 my dad, who was 19, grandpa, and grandma were camping in the Duluth, Mn. area when the camping trip took a side track. Everyone at the campground were ordered to stay in or very close to the sheltered lodge because Pretty Boy Floyd had been seen in the area.

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