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Chicago Auto Show - 1955

  • 1955Cover JackWebb Web22
    Exciting world premieres took place during the 47th Chicago Auto Show, including the debut of the 1955 Nash, Studebaker Speedster, Packard Request concept, and Lincoln Futura dream car. General Motors presented the Australian Holden, British Vauxhall and German Opel. GM experimental vehicles included the Chevy Nomad, Pontiac Bonneville, Olds F-88, Buick Wildcat II and Cadillac El Camino. A record 490,500 visitors attended the nine-day affair held in the International Amphitheatre. On the right, movie and television star Jack Webb and wife Dorothy appear in the Ford exhibit during their visit to the 1955 Chicago Auto Show. They're in front of a Ford Fairlane Crown Victoria with license plate 714, which was the badge number of Detective Joe Friday, the character played by Webb on Dragnet.
  • 1955TelevisionInterviewWeb22
    Edward L. Cleary, the general manager for the 1955 Chicago Auto Show and Chicago Automobile Trade Association, is seen being interviewed about that year’s event on live television by an unidentified woman. The scene includes a man operating a television camera and an overhead microphone.
  • 1955Bartenders@1955Web22
    A small bar on the second floor of the International Amphitheatre has two bartenders ready to serve the thirsty crowds attending the 47th annual Chicago Auto Show, held January 8-16, 1955.
  • 1955 5
    People are lined up on Halsted at 42nd Street to enter the International Amphitheatre on the first public day of the 1955 Chicago Auto Show. As the sign above the doorway indicates, the show ran, "Jan. 8th thru 16th inclusive."
  • 1955 4
    Inside the International Amphitheatre, two gentlemen are selling the official 1955 Chicago Auto Show program for 50 cents each.
  • 1955 2
    Two of the 20 "community queens" for the 1955 Chicago Auto Show, Sylvia Linzer/Miss Rogers Park (center) and Ona Lee McDermott/Miss Edgewater, shake hands with an unidentified admirer.
  • 1956 1
    Five of the 20 "community queens" pose in street clothes while sitting on a section of the modern-shaped stage decor for the "Motorevue of 1955" presentation. Pictured are (left to right): Miss Belmont (Constance Hodera); Miss Irving Park (Nancy Freese); Miss Logan Square (Peggy Corcoran); Miss West Suburban (Faye Ann Lindahl); and Miss Portage Park (Mary Lou Koeppe).
  • 1955 23
    On the main floor of the International Amphitheatre is the special “Thunderbird Salon” with three of the high-powered cars on exhibit. In the background is the Ford Theatre that featured the hour long CinemaScope movie titled, "See the New '55 Ford Cars in Action.” A fourth Thunderbird personal car was displayed with the Ford car line on the second floor of the International Amphitheatre.
  • 1955 21
    A large crowd mills through the Buick exhibit admiring the various models on display, including the pictured Century four-door hardtop - a new body style for 1955.
  • 1955 20
    Looking down one of the main aisles in the International Amphitheatre has the Pontiac exhibit situated on the right, with various 1955 models visible, including a Star Chief convertible. Oldsmobile's exhibit can be glimpsed directly behind the Pontiacs.
  • 1955 19
    Inside the Mercury exhibit a Montclair two-door hardtop is in the foreground. Several other Mercurys can be seen, including a four-door Montclair on a raised platform at the rear.
  • 1955 18
    On the display floor at the Lincoln-Mercury exhibit area, a Lincoln Capri two-door hardtop is in the foreground. Several other Lincolns and a Mercury station wagon are in the scene. The Lincoln Futura concept car is on the left, at the rear of the photo.
  • 1955 17
    The Lincoln Capri two-door hardtop that won the 1954 Carrera Panamericana (Mexican Pan American Road Race) is on display at the Lincoln-Mercury exhibit area on the 1955 auto-show floor. A sign proclaiming that "Lincoln Wins Again," along with a map of the race and trophies the car won, also are part of this exhibit.
  • 1955 16
    On the auto-show floor at the DeKalb Commercial Body Corporation exhibit area, a Ford chassis fitted with a DeKalb delivery van body is the single vehicle displayed. Note the building support column covers.
  • 1955 15
    On the display floor at the GMC Commercial truck exhibit, a 7/8 front view of a GMC diesel-powered chassis and cab is in the foreground, at right. Also visible, at far right, is the rear view of a milk delivery van. A GMC pickup truck with stake-body is at left, and a side-view of a pickup with side-mounted spare tire can be seen at left rear.
  • 1955 14
    On the display floor at the Studebaker Commercial truck exhibit, a Studebaker pickup truck is in the foreground, at center. Visitors could stand behind a rope and admire a two-ton truck chassis (tilted more than halfway over, with mirrors for better views). Note the Ford sign in the background.
  • 1955 13
    On the display floor at the International commercial truck exhibit is an International R-130 truck with a raised dump bed, pictured in a high 3/4-front view. Glimpses of other trucks are visible, as is a lineup of various engines, at left rear. One sign promotes a new overdrive transmission attachment.
  • 1955 12
    At the Collinite Auto Wax booth on the display floor during the 1955 show, a 1951 Cadillac sedan is used as the example to demonstrate the company's product, billed as the "permanent" auto wax. Many bottles of wax are displayed on the car's hood, with information placards on the roof and in its windows.
  • 1955 11
    In the aftermarket area on the show floor, Chicago Mayor Martin H. Kennelly (center) shakes hands with a woman dressed as Aunt Jemima, inside the Earl Dunne General Tire booth. Pictured are (left to right): three unidentified men; Mayor Kennelly; CATA president Earl T. Zweifel; "Aunt Jemima," plus, auto-show chairman and CATA treasurer Jerry H. Cizek.
  • 1955 10
    The Trilla's Pep-Mo Motor Tune-Up Reconditioner booth in the aftermarket area featured a miniature convertible, which used the headlights, bumpers, and hood ornament of a full-size automobile. Sold in cans, it was claimed that Pep-Mo "Cleans Engines While You Drive."
  • 1955 9
    Inside the Rupert Auto Safety Belt booth, sponsored by Rupert Parachute Co., a man and a young boy pose for the camera seated and buckled into an automobile seat. Safety belts were rare items in cars of the mid-1950s, not yet available from the auto manufacturers.
  • 1955 8
    Four motorcycles are displayed at the Harley Davidson motorcycle exhibit, where a sign mentions three sales locations in Chicago. A small display case is positioned between the motorcycles--one of which is a three-wheeler.
  • 1955CommunityQueensWeb22
    All 20 winning community beauty queens selected for the 1955 Chicago Auto Show posed together at the Palmer House Hotel.