- Written by webmin
Permit me, if you will, another indulgence in the vintage photography presented at the University of Vermont’s Landscape Change Program. We only scratched the surface of the program’s photo collection when we recently looked at the streets of Bennington and Miller Chevrolet-Cadillac’s old dealership. The archive has more than 35,000 photos, and unsurprisingly, most of the collection shows examples of rural life – Vermont is, after all, a state rather unencumbered by cosmopolitan trappings. But Vermonters tend not to focus on the bucolic idyll in their backyards, especially during winter and mud season.
Yes, there’s a charm to dirt roads. My guess is that this guy’s not feeling it. The picture dates to April 14, 1954, and shows what looks like a Chevrolet Suburban/Carryall being used either as a rural mail delivery vehicle or as a library’s bookmobile.
Of course, you don’t need mud to have slick roads, as this circa 1981 photo from the Henry Sheldon Museum shows. If only those were AMC Eagles instead of plain Concords on this truck shipment, then this photo would be thick with irony.
Slick roads perhaps also caused this accident in another Henry Sheldon Museum photograph dated January 22, 1939. The data associated with the photo notes that the accident occurred in South Lumbra, which is obviously somewhere near Lake Champlain, but we’ve yet to find it on a map. Whatever the town, there seemed to be little else of interest at the time. Drink Moxie!
The Henry Sheldon also contributed these two photos of fullsize GM cars dealing with winter snowstorms. The Chevrolet owner, pictured in 1976, appears to have been passed by a plow truck, while the Buick owner (photographed in 1979) is probably happy he hit that tree with his quarter panel rather than with his door.
Finally, while the above photo might appear to come close to showing that pastoral wintertime Vermont embedded in our national consciousness, what with the Rambler and the Econoline sitting peacefully in front of a snow-covered hill, that’s not the case. Two related photos tell more of the story: After a tractor fell into Warden Pond in Barnet in January 1962 (presumably through the ice), Howard Calkins had to go get his tractor to pull the first tractor out, hauling his tractor with the truck and trailer pictured here and in the other two photos.