The Golden Submarine


Built in 1917, the Golden Submarine was one of the first complete cars constructed by the great Harry Miller, who built several Indianapolis 500 race winners in the 1920's and 1930's. The idea of the car came from Barney Oldfield, who was more safety conscious than is typically recognized by his biographers - probably the main reason he survived the deadly era that contained his career. Oldfield's idea was essentially the same as the roll bar/cage. He simply wanted to protect himself in the event of a turnover. The end product was a car that was completely enclosed. Ironically, the car was really more of a death trap and when Oldfiled tumbled into a pond in one of his racing adventures and nearly drowned, the top of the car came off and it ran in more conventional configuration, including the 1919 Indianapolis 500 with Roscoe Sarles as driver. Check out this interesting photo of Barney in the car at its debut on Shorpy.  Shorpy is a wonderful site with lots of interesting historical photos covering a wide range of subjects.