This restored footage shows old Chevrolets, Fords, Cadillacs and Packards in their original state, in live action.
The 1930s was a significant era for the American automotive market as people were starting to get a little more cash in their pockets and were looking to drop some doe on a new automobile. Of course, this was mainly for the later years of that particular decade due to the Great depression having sunk its teeth into the throats of Americans across the nation since 1929. The streets of big cities like New York were flowing with an abundance of passenger vehicles and luxury automobiles, and the sidewalks flourished with brightly colored clothing to show the nation’s strong recovery from the previously devastated economic era. While we could fantasize all day long about what life must have been like in the time before environmental regulations and ridiculous electrification goals show an apparent unwillingness of automotive manufacturers to listen to their customers. This was a time when car companies still cared about their buyers.
Watch racing from the 1920s and 1930s here.
One particular relic from the past that allows us a peek into what life might have entailed in the 1930s is this incredible video and others like it. While nothing will ever be perfect when working with old and degraded footage, this video restoration is the closest that anyone could have gotten to a modern take on the vintage film. The concept of revitalizing old videos is not uncommon, as shown through the works of many WW1 history enthusiasts who dedicate a large portion of their lives to pursuing footage from the war. However, this is likely one of the only videos of its kind in existence as it simply shows life in New York as any bystander would have seen it in the 1930s.
In this video, we are met with many cars that would typically go for millions on today’s classic car collector market but seemed commonplace in their time. Some of these vehicles included several Chevrolets and Cadillacs. Still, the most prominent of the bunch is the outstanding Packard models, and we may have even spotted a Duesenberg, but it’s difficult to say for sure at this time. This five-minute video is essentially a walk through the streets of one of America’s most prominent cities, which was even more prevalent in that era as it was a hotspot for European immigration along with Ellis Island. It’s cool to see footage like this as it shows the true nature of a time that most of us have only ever seen in movies.
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