The Urban Archeologist: Would you buy a Nash if you had the cash?

Things you never knew about this long gone car company.

Nash 1940 ad
Nash 1940 ad

What I don’t know about old cars could fill a 1940 Nash. What I have learned about them has come from the colorful ads found in magazines such as Life, Look, American Home and others.


When I turned the cover of the February 1940 edition of American Home I was transfixed as I assume many were at the idyllic lifestyle promised by the ad (above). Where else would I want to be but with my best girl, by the lake tying the laces of my skates, as she holds a couple of mugs of hot cocoa?

Was the Nash a good car? With no 2014s to examine I became skeptical and figured that it was some millionaire’s folly to start his own line of cars. However, after a quick stop to Wikipedia I discovered that the Nash line of cars were not only several steps above the “folly” stage, they sound like they were made with a kind of philosophy that would be welcome these days.

 Nash's slogan from the late 1920s and 1930s was "Give the customer more than he has paid for" and the cars lived up to it. This is a line right out of the Wikipedia site and if it is true, along with all the other facts - being among the first to install seat belts, using a ventilation system that allowed for cabin cooling and heating – then I really am sorry Nash no longer exists.

 The ad above I felt was blog-worthy from the odd title alone: “Weather Eye Magic” However, upon study, I found that Nash had added a thermostat to the ventilation system that would adjust the pressure and temperature inside the car automatically – relieving drivers of foggy windows and adding comfort.

 The close-up images I added especially for the features Nash offered above all others – fold down seats, which allowed the car to be converted to a sleeper of sorts. As it says above, “…saves lodging costs.” I can imagine it also caused many parents sleepless nights if their daughters were picked up by their dates in a Nash.

 This ad and others like it have caused me to look a little further for the things that used to be so common place and are mostly all gone - Click here to take a look at some other “blog-worthy” ads of the 1940s.  

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veloce73 January 06, 2014 at 08:01 AM
Nash was a good car back in the day and they were first with their "automatic" ventilation system. This ad is a clear appeal to the woman in the family while most car buying decisions, at the time, were made by men. This meant that automobiles with bigger or better mechanical features, like Ford's V8 sold better and endured as car makers.
Greg Van Antwerp January 06, 2014 at 08:14 AM
Good comment! I will visit some car shows in the spring in the hopes of getting a look at one of Nash's 1940 models.
Rob Gianazza January 06, 2014 at 09:07 AM
Antique car shows are great family events too. Please share when and where they will be.
Jaimie Cura January 06, 2014 at 10:48 AM
Loved reading about those ads you linked to at the bottom! 25 words or less? Can someone please bring that kind of contest back again? :)
veloce73 January 07, 2014 at 10:01 AM
Probably the state's best FREE car show is held at Mark's auto parts in Granby, Ct. on Monday nights (5PM) starting in the spring and continuing until the fall. Most nights they have hundreds of cars and sometimes I think it approaches a thousand. All kinds of cars too, hot rods antiques, foreign, everything.


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