Playboy radio at York’s Lincoln Highway Service Station

The several Lincoln Highway slides I include within my History of the Susquehanna Trail presentation always produce related questions; such as this one from Fred Hoover: “Where was the Lincoln Highway Garage that sold radios? My father always claimed it was in West York. Dad went with my grandfather when they bought their first radio there in the late 20s.” I keep a list of the questions I can’t answer on the spot. A year later, while doing other research in the York County History Center newspaper microfilms, I happened upon an ad with this answer for Fred.

York directories indicated the Lincoln Highway Service Station was in business at 624 West Market Street from the early 20s until the early 30s. Being in business for only a decade, obviously it was not as well known at the Lincoln Highway Garage on East Market Street.

The November 6, 1931, ad in The Gazette and Daily indicates the Lincoln Highway Service Station sold Crosley Radios. The ad specifically featured the $49.75 Playboy radio. Click on this LINK for a Full View of the illustrations in this post if details are cut off in the cropping of illustrations.

The eight tubes and superheterodyne circuit in The Crosley Playboy radio were claimed “so sensitive that stations can be heard with the use of the Crosley Tennaboard as an aerial. This makes it easily portable—simply carry it from room to room and plug in the light socket.”

I though it weird that service stations sold home radios. However a little research showed Crosley Radios were sold at many service stations, garages and automobile dealerships around the country; such as this 1931 ad for the same radio offered by the J. B. Cooper Motor Company in North Carolina.

Links to related Lincoln Highway posts include:

Reading the HEADLINES; A Quick Index to ALL YorksPast Posts

About Stephen H. Smith

Stephen H. Smith is a design engineer who worked at York International Corp. for 33 years before retiring several years ago to research and write books full time; his second career. The initial emphasis was on family history when he won a national award during 2002 for his first book “Barshingers in America.” Positive feedback and that award were influential in his decision to retire early from engineering and start a retirement career.

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