Mike, is this NZ? One of them blokes is the right way up!! Lookit that daft bugger stripping the insulation with his teeth! In any case, they are both up the pole- those shorts with braces are soooo outre.
Just a little question. Did the Detroit Electric Car ever have much of a turn-over in the US?. Reason I ask that, is because, goods were never sent here from the US unless they sold well there, we had the Model A and the Model T here, but this?.
Electric cars were popular among well-to-do women until about 1930. Women did not want to deal with hand-cranked starters, pre-synchromesh gearboxes, manual chokes, and the like. Most of their driving was local, so range was not an issue. As internal combustion technology improved (electric start, better gearboxes, automatic choke, etc.) electrics faded from the scene.
Electric trucks were used to some extent for local delivery during this same period. Having fewer moving parts, they were more reliable in the earlier years. A company whose delivery routes could easily be planned within the limitations of the batteries might have found this an attractive option. As internal combustion became more reliable in the late '20s/early '30s, these too were phased out.
I think I remember reading that Jack Mack, the founder of Mack Trucks, was killed when he stopped to help a woman start her car. Manual starters were famous for breaking arms when a cylinder would backfire. In Mack's case, the crank hit him in the jaw and broke his neck.
1924 In the early afternoon of March 14, Jack Mack was enroute to a business meeting in Weatherly, Pennsylvania in his Chandler coupe. His car became involved in an accident with a trolley car of the Lehigh Valley Transit Company, which was crossing the road diagonally. Jack was killed almost instantly when his light car, being pushed off the road ahead of the trolley, was caught against a heavy pole and crushed like an egg shell. His body was interred in Fairview Cemetery in Allentown, just above the former Mack plant on 10th Street.
Manual starters were famous for breaking arms when a cylinder would backfire.
Happened to my grandfather when he tried to crank up a tractor some time during the 1950ies.
Regarding that accident: until today trolley cars are much stronger in accidents than ordinary cars... from the trolley car accidents we had here in the last 20 years I can say the only things that are really dangerous for trolley cars are snow ploughs, trucks and members of their own species. About a year ago a bus driver crossed a red light, got hit by a trolley car and the trolley drove almost right through the bus. The bus was scrap metal and two people died (even worse, two children, a 4 year old boy flew out of the window and a 16 year old boy was decapitated by sharp metal edges), the trolley was repaired pretty soon and is in service again... the worst injury in the trolley was a bruise...