Our First Car on the Little Sixty-V. Allen Chron
Our first car was a used 1920’s Model “T” Ford. Dad had bought it from a neighbor for $15, as-is. The car had no top and had been sitting outside for some time. It had wooden spoke wheels which had become dry and loose. Dad got it running and made it all the way home before trouble overtook him. As he turned into our yard, the right front wheel fell apart. The wooden spokes flew everywhere, the hub dropped to the ground and the tire and rim rolled slowly toward the house. But, not to worry! Nothing mechanical was beyond Dad’s fixing. He gathered the spokes and rim, jacked up the axle and began replacing the spokes. He made them tight by using thin strips of bacon rind as bushings. It worked great!
I learned to drive in this “T” model by pulling strands of barbed wire down through the field to be used in the new hog fence Dad was building. After work one day, I asked for the privilege of driving home so that mom could see my newly acquired skill. She was standing on the porch smiling as I pulled into the yard to park in front of the wash house. Inside this wash house was Mom’s prized Maytag washing machine which Dad had bought for her the year before. Nothing meant more to her than this machine. I pulled up to park, more intent on Mom’s smile of approval than on my driving. A Model T has three pedals on the floor–the low gear, reverse and the brake. I stomped my foot down for the brake, but instead, hit low gear! I plowed into the front of the wash house with a crash! The wall was pushed in and the fenders were bent, but no one was hurt. Mom came rushing off the porch with a picture of utter consternation on her face. She rushed to the wash house, not to see if we or the car was hurt, but to see if I had bashed her precious washing machine! Fortunately, it was OK! Then she checked on us!