Family Fender Benders: Don Foutz, 1946
To err is human. To find your fenders trading paint — or parts — with another automobile during the course of your lifetime, um, mundane.
If the local newspaper captured everything from 6-year-old birthday parties to jury summonses to ailments cured, you can bet it faithfully recorded the minor dustups that were a matter of routine on 20th century roadways in and about town.
And in case you never thought grandpa — or grandma, or great-grandpa — encountered a bad turn or two behind the wheel, well, this series should dispel that myth.
In all its permanent record detail.
Today’s inaugural installment puts us on an Ohio back road in March 1946. The two oldest Foutz brothers — Roy and Carl — are passengers in a car piloted by their youngest brother, my then 32-year-old grandpa Don. They’re on their way to a road Dover basketball game when they suffer that common specimen of automotive transport — road trippus interruptus.
From the New Philadelphia Daily Times of Monday, March 18, 1946:
En route to the Dover-East Liverpool basketball game at New Concord, a car driven by Don Foutz, 32, of Dover, was involved in a collision with a car driven by W.F. Jones, 24, of Canton, two and a half miles north of Newcomerstown on Rt. 21, Saturday at 6 p.m.
State Highway patrolmen said the accident occurred when Jones stopped for a car that was partially parked on the highway and the Foutz car, also traveling south, was unable to stop and struck the rear of Jones’ car.
Carl and Roy Foutz, brothers of the driver, suffered bumps and bruises. Both machines were damaged.