Cars

Ones that 'got away'

Rod Sondergard sent several vintage photos of his grandfather, Niels Sondergard, with various vehicles he owned. "He came to America in 1906 from Denmark, looking for opportunity. He settled in Ramona, Kan., and became involved in a number of businesses. He purchased a 1910 Model B Maytag (yes, the washing machine company) automobile for about $1,200. He used it for a delivery service and to drive the local doctor on his medical calls."
Rod Sondergard sent several vintage photos of his grandfather, Niels Sondergard, with various vehicles he owned. "He came to America in 1906 from Denmark, looking for opportunity. He settled in Ramona, Kan., and became involved in a number of businesses. He purchased a 1910 Model B Maytag (yes, the washing machine company) automobile for about $1,200. He used it for a delivery service and to drive the local doctor on his medical calls." Courtesy photo

Here's our latest installment of old car photos submitted by Wheels page readers.

The pictures are remarkably good, considering how old some of the photos are, and each one has a story or two associated with it, which makes them all the more interesting.

I'll admit right up front that I "cheated" a bit by including photos submitted by a couple of good friends I have worked with for years at The Eagle. And one of the other photos isn't even a car, it's of a horse-drawn dairy wagon. Warren Kime, who submitted it, wrote, "This is not an 'automobile' but it has 4 wheels and is powered by a team of two horsepower." It's such a nice shot, I just had to include it.

Beccy Tanner, The Eagle's Kansas history expert, sent me a grainy photo of a guy, probably her grandfather, standing by a very tall school bus, probably the first one the Radium school system ever operated.

"My brother tells the story of when they were kids, a 'local geezer' had just finished having some liquid refreshments in Radium and was driving home at about 5 mph. The bus was following and the kids were getting a little impatient having to go so slow... One of the high school boys jumped out of the moving bus, ran up and tapped the geezer's driver's window and told him to please pull over or speed it up, because they all needed to get on with their lives," Beccy wrote.

Rod Sondergard sent a whole batch of photographs relating to his grandfather, Niels Sondergard, who immigrated to America from Denmark in 1906. As Rod said, "The photos cover about 40 years of automotive history," from a fabulous 1910 Model B Maytag to a quartet of brand new 1939 Mercury automobiles parked in the snow in front of his grandfather's auto dealership in Ramona, Kan. What a ride old Niels must have had.

Sad to say, I lost the caption information for a few reader-submitted photos when my Eagle e-mail veered off into the ditch a couple of months ago. If you sent me old car pictures but don't see them either here, or on-line in the Wheels photo galleries at www.kansas.com, please drop me a line with the information.

Last, but certainly not least, comes the photo and supporting text from my former Wheels page buddy, Kevin Sheedy, who remembers the day in 1961 when his dad brought home a vivid pink 1957 Olds Super 88 four-door hardtop equipped with a 371 cubic inch V-8 with a factory 3-2 barrel carb setup.

"The family nicknamed the Olds the 'Pink Fink.' My dad was a car guy... when he put the pedal to the metal, the 315-horse J-2 engine both thrilled and terrified me — and a gearhead was born," Kevin confessed.

Check back here in a few weeks, as we will be featuring some more "One That Got Away" stories from other gearheads.

Related stories from Wichita Eagle

  Comments