2017 Halifax County Heritage & Antique Machinery Festival

Tinker's Car Club of South Boston Sponsors Classic Car Cruise-In at Festival

One of the most popular featured attractions at the Halifax County Heritage and Antique Machinery each year is a Cruise In sponsored by the Tinkers Club of South Boston.  Attracting as many as 200 entrants from around the region, beautifully restored cars and trucks dating back to the early 1920’s continue to create an impressive line-up for festival visitors. 

Benny Smith of Volens will again this year be showing his 1946 Hudson truck.  Smith’s vehicle has a car front end and a truck bed on the back end. 

According to Smith, “No cars, commercial trucks or auto parts were manufactured in the United States between February 1942 and October 1945 because the country was at war. “

On January 1, 1942, all sales of car manufacturing, including the delivery of cars to customers who had previously contracted for delivery, were frozen by the US Government’s Office of Production Management.

After the end of World War II, the Hudson Motor Company made a one year only offering to manufacture a cross between a car and a truck.  The vehicle weighed 3,000 pounds and only 2, 917 of these vehicles were produced in 1946. 

H. T. Puckett of Volens was the original owner of the vehicle, purchasing it in 1946 to use in his garage business. 

“I worked for Mr. Puckett at his garage in the mid 50’s before going into service in 1955 and I drove the vehicle frequently while working there for two years,” said Smith. 

Smith says that while he was in service, Mr. Puckett started installing oil systems in tobacco barns and used the truck as a service vehicle.  “While I was in service, farmers were upgrading from wood burning barns to oil burning barns,” said Smith. 

Smith said that Mr. Puckett used the vehicle for his business until 1959.

Years later Smith asked Mr. Puckett’s son, Billy, about the old Hudson.  “Billy Puckett told me the truck was taken to a family junkyard in Danville and I could have it if I restored it.”      

Restoration of the old Hudson truck took Benny Smith several years to complete,   “I worked on the truck for about 5 years.  Since completion, I have been driving it to Cruise In’s for about 4 years now,” said Smith.

One of Benny’s favorite Cruise In stops is the Halifax County Heritage and Antique Machinery Festival. 

Benny Smith’s restored 1946 Hudson truck and many other meticulously restored classic vehicles will be on display at the 14th Annual Halifax County Heritage and Antique Machinery Festival May 5th through 7th at the Halifax County Fairgrounds.

More informational is available about the Heritage Festival at www.halifaxcountyheritagefestival.org.  

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