Leslie Jones was a staff photographer for the Boston Herald Newspaper for nearly 40 years, starting in 1917. Over that time he shot hundreds of thousands of images of a city on the move and in constant evolution. As it was the ‘teens when America really got obsessed with wheels, cars, and the pleasures of all things automotive, it was also that era when inexperienced operators in flimsy machines were involved in crashes. These crashes ranged from somewhat comical fender benders to horrifying affairs with parts of people, cars, and property spread over large debris fields.
During this time when the below photos, now archived at the Boston Public Library, were taken, there was no licensing process for drivers. Literally anyone that could afford a car was able to drive it, no matter what their level of proficiency or ability was. The cars in the below photos were obviously operated by people who were low in both proficiency and ability.
There’s not much more to say other than scroll down and enjoy this journey of twisted steel through the streets of pre-WWI Boston. It is both history lesson and cautionary tale. It also makes us happy that we didn’t live back then. It seems that no one was safe at any time or in any location!
Thanks to Malc for the tip!
Scroll down to see some amazing photos!