William Carlson's 1956 Victoria

William Carlson May 2022

It's not Victor, but the same model. Ford Victoria. It all started when I was 17 years old. In my senior year in high school in Napa, California. The high school football player who was my friend came to school one day with a yellow and white Victoria 1956. It was in 1961 when all of this happened. The car was five years old, and his parents gave it to him as a graduation present. It was a HOT summer day, and all the windows were down, and it was in pristine condition. I said to him, what a beautiful car. I did not have a car as my dad would not let me buy one even though I had worked as a kid and had saved $4,000. That was a lot of money back then. I could not buy a car as it was in a savings account and required both signatures to release the money. To say the least I was not happy.

To continue, I said to him “what a pretty two door hardtop” and he reached in and opened the door from the inside rear door and I almost fell over. He had welded off the rear door handles. Back then, as you all know, four door cars were not cool. I have never forgotten that day and I am 79 now.

I have had many cars, at some time I had a 1955 Chevrolet convertible, all stock restored, a 1956 Chevrolet Bel Air, a 1957 Bel Air, both who had four-speed 350 CC's. Both 1957 Chevrolet's were custom and even an edged two door. I have owned many cars - both drivers and collectors. I never bought my dream car, a 1956 Ford Victoria four door hardtop, as guys do not like four door cars. Well, at 79 years of age and have not had an old car for 12 years now, I present you with my dream car.

I know a lot of you will be disappointed in what I did to a nice 1956 Vicki, but this is my last car. It was really rough when I bought it.

I contracted a body shop in Eureka California. Where I now live and gave them an open ticket to do what I wanted. $6,200 later, I now have my dream. Tom, at California Body Shop in Eureka, California, did all the work. He cut up a 1954 Chevrolet grill and installed it, a great piece of work and very time consuming, molded rear handles, installed a 1955 Mercury taillight, and installed rear air shocker. Bought American Ford truck wheels, chromed all inside window and door moldings.

I had the car shipped from Connecticut for $2,400. When it arrived in that large truck, I fell in love with it. Overall, I have too much money in it, but it is my “DREAM CAR”, so I am finally happy. My folks had a Ford 1956 four door post. I hated that it had the pillar between the doors. Well, I am not much at writing about anything, but you presently encouraged me to write and send pictures of my car.

I hope all enjoy and for you purist stock fans, I am so very sorry that I did what I did but remember one thing it is my dream car, so be it. Enjoy yours as I am enjoying mine. The transmission and a 292 are stock and in great condition.

The 1956 Ford Victorias are so overloaded as the Chevrolet pulled back them as they do now.

I believe that the Victorias are the best-looking cars of the fifties along with the Tri-Fives but are so overlooked. Thanks for reading. If you would like to contact me with comments - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Submitted by:
William and Gwen Carlson
Eureka, California