Monday, January 23, 2017

The Auto Elecktrick Vulcanizer, 1910

Bizarre spelling.  An attempt to stand out, or to assist in trademarking the phrase?

Anyway, yet another attempt to deal with tire punctures, which were a very common problem in the early days of motoring. Country folk were known to scatter nails and broken glass on roads to discourage motorists, who were seen as intrusive wealthy nuisances.

As Bellamy Partridge relates in his autobiographical book Fill 'er Up.  The Story of Fifty Years of Motoring (McGraw-Hill, 1952):

"Word went around that tacks and glass scattered in the road would keep the motorists away. There can be no doubt that the motorists were annoyed and at times very angry over this treatment--but they still kept coming.  Tales were told of farmers burying old rakes in the highways, teeth upward and concealed under a layer of dust.  And on the route of one of the early Glidden Tours an embattled farmer buried the blade of a crosscut saw at a narrow place in the road in such a way that every motorcar running over it suddenly found all four tires punctured and simultaneously deflated. 
It was a common practice to bury empty bottles under the dust in the road, especially on Sundays, and short strips of barbed wire were very popular with mischievous urchins as well as very hard to spy from the seat of a horseless carriage drive in a cloud of dust."

1 comment:

Mister G said...

Not to mention the constant stream of loose horseshoe nails.