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Skylit taxis

Dave Mellor NJ

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Guest De Soto Frank

The three cabs in the lower-right corner, surrounding the Checker, appear to be De Soto, probably outfitted by Waters, famous for their "Sky-view" cabs...

Also notice that the Checker has "suicide doors", front & rear...

Very neat photo... thanks for sharing !

Some good info on James Waters and his taxicab business:


Edited by De Soto Frank (see edit history)
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During, and shortly after WWII, while my Dad was serving with the Seabees in the South Pacific, his sister, my Aunt Norma would take me from Brooklyn into Manhattan on Sundays. We would eat at the Horn & Hardart Automat, where you put nickels into a slot and the glass door opened to serve each dish. Then a floor show, Rockettes, and a movie at Radio City Music Hall, or a Broadway show.

Our ride was usually a Desoto or a Checker taxicab, and they were the "Open-Air", or "Sky-View. The open rear roof section of the big, long-wheelbase Desotos allowed me to look up at the skyscrapers in Manhattan, and for a young kid, in love with cars in 1944-1945, this was spectacular.

I sometimes opened the jump-seat to sit there just for the fun of it, and then went back to sit with Aunt Norma. She was a treasure during Dad's absence, and for many years beyond with her cross-country bus trips.

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