The 1929 Rocket Car

Daniel D. Hungerford and his brother Floyd of Elmira, New York, were fascinated by rockets and their promise for the future. After all, the Wright Brothers had flown in an airplane for over twenty years, and rockets were the next step. The brothers put their heads together and built their own rocket car!

In 1929, they built their Solar & Interstellar Rocket Car, dubbed the "Shirley Lois Moon Girl" after Daniel's daughter. Made largely of cardboard and linoleum, a 1921 Chevy chassis, and powered by a set of gasoline-burning rocket motors, the thing must have been a fearsome sight on the back roads of rural New York. The lightweight building materials were a safety consideration. "In case of trouble," Daniel said, "I wanted to be able to kick my way out." Amazingly enough, they got the thing registered and licensed in the State of New York.

The rocket car could travel up to 70 miles per hour! Also, it left an impressive 20-foot flame behind it. So what next? Would they build more rocket cars, travel the world with the one they had, or work on a rocket to go into space next? They planned to do all those things. Read the story of the rocket car and see more pictures at io9. -via Everlasting Blort


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