Going to the Store:
Remembering Our Hupmobile

By S. Dail Yeatts, 2004

Old Car

My father and mother were the Rev. G. Dewey Yeatts and Artie Watlington Yeatts. Our family lived in the 1930's on the Dry Fork Road at the east corner of what is now the I. H. Powell Road. We called it the Gold Mine Road.

I remember a Hupmobile that we owned. When we had to go places on it we usually had to push it to get it started. One day Mama told Daddy to go to the store which was a mile away. The store was located near the home of Oscar Stowe and was operated by him. It was a typical Depression-era country store. Only a few staple items, animal feed, and a gas hand pump were available. It was a good place for the men to sit and talk.

We kids, Elsie, Faye, Helen, Dail, and Alma, helped push the car. Our baby sister, Rachel, stayed at home with Mama. Harold rode in the car since he was too small to push. Daddy also helped push and would jump in the car when we got up some speed, put the transmission in gear and let out on the clutch to turn the motor. There was a long hill about half way to the store. All of us got in the car on the hill and Daddy jumped in with us all the way down to the bottom where we had to ford the Dixon Creek. Pushing the car up the next hill was pretty tough.

We did stop to rest at intervals and Daddy would take the gas line to the carburetor loose and have me blow in the gas tank to blow out any trash that might be lodged in the line.

We pushed that car all the way to the store and back home and it never started. I guess that is where the phrase “family car” got its title — it took the whole family to crank it!

The Hupmobile died soon after that pushing incident. Daddy finally got it started and was on his way to town when the radiator cap blew off. Steam and oil shot up in the air, covering the windshield. The car passed away on the side of the road and Daddy came home in a 1935 Dodge. Come to think of it, the Japanese might have sent it back to us in the form of bullets.

One more story concerning the Yeatts family: Grandpa Coleman Bennett Yeatts was held up by some men as he came back from selling tobacco in Danville just as you turn from the Dry Fork Road onto the Powell Road. The men had gloves on, their faces were mostly covered and the part that was showing had been blackened with soot or something to color it black. Grandpa said when they were moving him to the tree to tie him up their sleeves slipped up and he could tell they were white. He was tied to an oak tree and was able to get loose just before a storm came. They were never caught and our grandparents were without the money from the sale of their tobacco.


Dewey Yeatts family

The Dewey and Artie Yeatts family, around the time of the above Hupmobile incident:


Notes:


Book by S. Dail Yeatts

(Available from the sponsor.)

Along the Dry Fork Road

Along the Dry Fork Road



Other Books Concerning Pittsylvania County History

(Available from the sponsor.)

History of Pittsylvania County, VA

Clement: History of Pittsylvania County

Pittsylvania: Homes and People of the Past

Fitzgerald: Pittsylvania: Homes and People of the Past

Eighteenth Century Landmarks of Pittsylvania County, VA

Hurt: Eighteenth Century Landmarks of Pittsylvania County


An Intimate History of the American Revolution in Pittsylvania County, Virginia

Hurt: An Intimate History of the American Revolution in Pittsylvania County

Footprints from the Old Survey Books

Dodson: Footprints from the Old Survey Books

Histories of the Dividing Line Betwixt Virginia and North Carolina (Dover)

Byrd: Histories of the Dividing Line Betwixt Virginia and North Carolina


Pittsylvania's Eighteenth-Century Grist Mills

Melton: Pittsylvania's Eighteenth-Century Grist Mills

Pittsylvania's Nineteenth-Century Grist Mills

Melton: Pittsylvania's Nineteenth-Century Grist Mills

Thirty-Nine Lashes, Well Laid On

Melton: Thirty-Nine Lashes, Well Laid On


Pittsylvania County's Historic Courthouse

Melton: Pittsylvania County's Historic Courthouse

Tales About People in a Small Town

Jones: Tales About People in a Small Town



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