Motorized Vehicle

Personal motorized vehicles were a luxury few Canadians could afford at the start of the twentieth century. Many owners enjoyed showing off their vehicles, like the farmer posed in this vehicle on his property in Plympton, Ontario. 

Motorized Vehicle in Plympton

Driving became a popular pastime for vehicle owners. A couple posed with their dog on a drive in their motorized vehicle in Plympton, Ontario in 1918. 

Truck on Parade

A decorated truck used in a parade for Lambton county's 149th Battalion, in Plympton-Wyoming, Ontario.

Gasoline Licence and Ration Coupon Book

Gasoline use in Canada was limited during the war through the use of ration coupon books like this one.

Driving in wartime

The federal government placed strict limits on the purchase of gasoline during the Second World War, but extra fuel could be made available under special circumstances.

Rides for soldiers

Hitch-hiking was very common in the 1940s and this sign, placed on the car's dashboard or glued to a window, indicated that the driver was happy to give a ride to anyone in uniform.

Driving in a blackout

To achieve an effective blackout, the BC government issued this pamphlet to instruct drivers on modifying their cars, motorcycles, and bicycles by masking the headlights.

Traffic.pdf (13.15 MB)

Commercial gasoline ration

The operator of this commercial vehicle was allowed 200 units of fuel each year. Each coupon bore the vehicle license plate number, to guard against misuse.

Commercial.pdf (14.5 MB)

Gasoline rationing

Ration coupons were a coveted necessity for civilians. This is an example of "Special, Category A" coupons which governed vehicle licencing and gasoline allotments.

Vehicle Data Book

Used as a reference handbook for the Canadian Army Overseas, this vehicle data booklet includes descriptions, photographs, and technical details of every vehicle used by the Canadian Army during the Second World War. A summary on page three explains how it would be useful to "those engaged in the supply, maintenance, and operational handling of military vehicles."