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Reminiscing – Granddad’s Model A

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Granddad’s 1920 Model T C-Cab. Photo courtesy David Lowry.

[Editor’s note: This story, edited by Richard Lentinello, comes to us from David Lowry of Plymouth, Massachusetts.]

My late grandfather was a Ford man for as long as I can remember, and even before that. He had a laundry business in Pasadena, California, and his most reliable business vehicle was his 1920 Model T C-Cab. I’m not sure how long he owned it, but I know it was more than 10 years.

The Model T was a wonderful work truck, but not so great for his wife and two young daughters as a family transporter, so in 1929 he added a brand new Model A Town Sedan, and upon retirement around 1936 or 1937, sold the Model T and of course kept the Model A. He was never one for anything that was not practical, and the Model A could not have been more comfortable nor reliable, so the Model A soldiered on throughout the Great Depression, into the early 1940s. He considered a new car at that time, but with the war raging, new cars were simply not available. Besides, the Model A was doing just fine. His family loved the car almost as much as he, and we kids had many a ride on the running boards when he would pull in the driveway. Both his daughters and at least one grandkid learned to drive on that car.

After the War when new cars became available, he decided that there was absolutely no reason to buy one. The Model A was mint thanks to his loving care. When I went off to college in 1955 he was happy to loan me the old Ford on occasion, much to the delight and envy of my fellow students.

But alas, time waits for no man, and when he passed away in 1963, at age 93, he still owned and drove that Model A. The car was sold as part of his estate, and to this day I kick myself for not trying to acquire it. I was young with family obligations and not much money. I’d do almost anything to see that car again, and have a ride on the running board.