During World War I, a training school for automobile mechanics was established to supply drivers and mechanics for the war effort. This photograph, which appeared in the Texaco Star of March, 1919, shows workers receiving "progressive instruction on the parts of the chassis."
It's Christmas Eve of 1946 and these women are hard at work at the Hall Level Works, 1119 East 4th Street. World War II precipitated a large influx of women into the labor force to fill vacancies left by the men who had gone to "the front."
"Owens said the Ford Model T cars he used to work on were easier to repair than today's high-tech automobiles filled with electronics and computer-driven parts, but he said he has been able to keep up with changes by attending classes and reading trade materials.
"'I have advanced along with the automobiles,' said Owens .'People used to work on automobiles when they did not know how to read or write,' said Owens. 'There's no such thing as that now. The day is coming in the auto repair field when a head mechanic is going to have to have a master's degree.'"
Murray Owens, Austin American-Statesman, September 5, 1991