Thursday, October 20, 2016

Three-Wheeler Thursday 10/20/16

Original Steampunks Kim Oman, Frank Baumgartner, and camera-shy Andrew Kozinsky build a car, and the Associated Press sends out a wire-story that was eventually picked up by Popular Science magazine.

From the June, 1940 issue of Popular Sciencemagazine

But the lads had been steaming for some time before Popular Science went to press, as various newspapers ran with the AP copy well in advance of the magazine's 3-month publishing lead time. This from the March 4 edition of Journal-Every Evening (The News Journal) of Wilmington, Delaware:

Punksteam 3

On the same day the Asbury Park Press ran the same article under the title "Trio Builds Steam Auto," as did the Wilkes-Barre Times Leader-The Evening News under the heading "Boys Build Steam Car To Burn Wood, Operates Cheaply." Then, on March 19, 1940 the Journal-Every Evening returned to the story and published the same photo that would appear in Popular Science:

Punksteam 2

On the same day The Bee of Danville, Virginia ran the same photo and caption on their "Pictorial News of the Day" page under the heading "New Jersey Boys Build Land Steamer From Spare Parts."

Popular Science notwithstanding, the big moment of glory for the lads—at least for Kim and Frank— came when Roland Jack Scott (known professionally as R. J. Scott) immortalized them in his syndicated Scott's Scrap Book (published from 1931 until circa 1967), which copied its concept from Ripley's Believe It or Not. This cartoon panel is from the May 22, 1940 edition of The Logan Daily News in Ohio:

Punksteam 4

There are other news items out there, but you get the idea.

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