A Revolutionary Car Design Era

the character Fonzie from the sitcom Happy Day...

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Ford revolutionized car design in the nineteen forty-nine era. The forty nines were amazingly streamlined and beautiful. The stodgy look of the earlier designs lost favor to smooth flowing lines. The Mercury Division of Ford  hit a home run with its body style. The nineteen forty-nine through fifty-two Mercury is a favorite among hot rodders around the world. When chopped, Frenched,  and smoothed beyond its original flowing lines, the car transforms into fluid motion.

In the sit-com Happy Days the character Fonzi reminds me of a friend from my old neighborhood. The kids nick named him Dago. Dago’s  jet black hair swept back into a duck’s tail. He wore a black leather jacket and engineer boots decorated with chrome carpet tacks.  Dago became the inspiration for “The Fonz.” Dago drove a nineteen forty-nine Mercury coupé, jet black; what a car, what a character.

Recently, I had occasion to visit with Dago during a meeting of the kids from my old neighborhood in Burnside. His real name is Bob, and he is still a vibrant character with very black hair, and the same panache he had as a teen. This one is for you Bob.

My collection of Mercury’s from 1949-1952

6 Responses

  1. Grumpa, is it possible that Bob, ” DAGO ” was from Roseland? I remember a DAGO named Bobby K. Who raced cars out of the Barbecue Pit on 127th St. Chuck

    • Chuck: I don’t think the Dago, I knew was from Roseland.

  2. Dear Joe,Thanks for the up date on the cars, But my 1949 Mercury Coupe was Dark Blue, My 1950 Mercury Coupe was the Jet black one ! They where the BEST: I sure miss them: Thanks again for the kind words, Bob; DAGO:

    • Bob: Thanks for the correction. My memory isn’t what it used to be. I didn’t even remember that you had two Mercs.

  3. Classic Beauties like those bring back many memories. Others would be, 1953 Merc., 55 and 55 Chevys, and a 55 Ford Crown Victoria. Too bad we cannot bring back those DAYS. huck

    • Wouldn’t it be wonderful to bring back the fifties? All we can do is pop twenty-five grand for an old car that cost two thousand when it was brand new. Thanks for the comment.

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