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Homepage. This page: Memories of a 1948-1952 flathead V8 Ford truck living in NSW, Australia.

The Ford F4 truck driven by Brian's father in Australia.

Brian has sent many interesting pieces to use on the site, and this page describes the memories he has of an American truck that his father drove in the 1950s. It is an F-series "Bonus Built" Ford, of the late 1940s or early 1950s. Various models were produced, from the F1 pickup through to the F8 truck. I think this is probably a mid-range example, so probably an F4 unless someone knows otherwise.
(Please click the thumbnail to view full-size image.)
F-series Ford truck in Australia
Brian takes up the story:
"These photos show the Macleay River Shire Council Truck that dad drove in the fifties. The truck was used for road patrol and maintenance of the roads in the Shire. Unfortunately at the time there was a practice of arpatheid against the local aborigines practised in Kempsey, in that they had to sit in front of the rope in the picture theatre, with the whites behind the rope. The aborigines were not allowed into the swimming pool and so on. They were treated very badly. The reason I mention this is that there were several working on the Shire council and dad used to drive them to and from home and at work. On school holidays we used to go with dad and while riding in the back of the truck with them, the aborigines used to teach us how to play the gum leaves. Dad got on well with the aboriginals and they respected him. You can see that the truck had high sides so that men could sit in it safely. On the second (rear 3/4) photo of the truck, note the extended arm that was used to give hand signals prior to indicators. There was a yellow hand and you raised the bar and used the lever in the cylinder to either place the hand in the stop or turn position. By the time of the front-on photo it seems indicators have been added.
Rear view of the truck
There were a lot of roads to maintain, with the trip from Kempsey NSW to Armidale NSW being very precarious. In places the dirt road was some 200 feet above the macleay river and there was no room to pass. The truck was only inches from the side of the cliff. My sister and I would sit in the back of the truck holding each other in terror while the aborigines took great delight in laughing at us. Then at other times we would be stopped by fallen trees that the men had to clear off the road, or walk through flooded causeways placing markers to show the depth of the water for other drivers. Graders would try and smooth the roads out but this would only last a few weeks before the traffic tore the roads up again.
Kempsey was on the coast while Armidale was on top of the great Dividing Range. It all seems a long time ago but the road has remained in such conditions to this day in several places."
Great memories Brian, thanks so much for sending them over :-)
Visit the motoring memories homepage at oldclassiccar for more stories like this.

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