THE RACE TRACK AT WEST LEBANON, NH
AKA The Twin State Jalopy Club Track


Courtesy of Sandra Godwin Fontana
You see, Henrietta ? He has lots of nice, safe bars in there.

       Sandra Fontana, a daughter of New Hampshire 1950's driver "Peanie" Goodwin, was kind enough to track down his personal photos from that unnamed track, on what is now the landfill, near West Leb. I will eventually place all of Sandra's scans on this page, totally dependant on available time. My thanks to any and all members of the Goodwin family who may have helped with this. These are primary [non - professional] shots of a track that almost became completely forgotten.
            From the scarce sources on the track, it seemed to have had the Twin State Jalopy Club, and the track itself was called the Twin State Jalopy Track. Thus far,
I have only three or four paragraphs from the nearby White RIver Junction Landmark paper to use. I am certain it had more coverage, but I haven't been able to access any other papers so far.
            According to the few Landmark paragraphs, feature winners in 1950 included Pop Goodwin, "Bullet" Bullard, Stub Piper [with the first George Barber car 46], Walter Smith, Morgy Boivin, and Harold Mossey. Famed NH driver Harold Hanaford insists he won there, as well. It is said that Rutland, V T driver Al Romano drove here first before his family built Pico Raceway. He, like Hanaford, was greeted with resentment by the locals. RIchford, VT's noted Harold "Cannonball" Baker ended up on his roof trying to race there.


Courtesy of Scott Haskell
Maurice Congdon [12] and Ray Sanborn [outside 3rd
row] are two entrants in this race lineup.


All Photos Courtesy
of Sandra Fontana unless
otherwise stated

Well - known 1950's NH
driver Maurice Condon.

Maurice Condon,
at speed on the
loose, sandy - looking
West Leb track.

Maurice Condon,
lining up on track.

Maurice Condon,
again.

Two cops and another
man watching work in the
West Leb pits.

 

Two cops and another
man wearing one of
those awful '50's gas station hats talk to one of the drivers.

 

Work goes on
with the car
#7-11. Note the
Hell's Angels
 reference.

One of the cars bearing
an almost - identical
#15. This one went
off the track [which
apparently wasn't too
hard to do].

Two men figure out how
to extricate #15,
"the sedan".

Pushing a car in the
pits near the other
car #15.

Another view of
pushing car #93. The 358, sporting an ad for the Riverside Grill, waits
to go by.

 

Car #34, with
the star on the
side. The driver
is obviously happy
to be photographed.

A great shot of
Car 34 - one of
the more technically
- sound cars seen
at West Leb.

A crumpled #1.

Big 'ol #37 sedan
sits somewhere at
West Leb.

My favorite shot
of the lot: a good
- looking car 60,
at speed.

Car 358, going off
the track.

Car 13 and another
entry had "a awful accident", as Jim Barton would have said.

Another awful
accident, this one
 involving car 6 and 1/8.
Another guy using his
hat size for a numeral ?

 

Nice view of car 5
coming out of what must
be turn 4.

Car 15 lined up for a race.
In the old days, they
would do the lineups
right on the track and
make the crowd wait.

Nice view of car 5
coming out of what must
be turn 4. This time, he
has company !

George Hodgdon Photo
Courtesy of Scott Haskell

George Hodgdon, likely
raced at West Leb.
The car certainly did - then
driven by Harold Hanaford.

George Hodgdon Photo
Courtesy of Scott Haskell

Called "Hot Rod" in those days, Harold Hanaford raced at West Leb. and
beat the Goodwins. They didn't like that.

Courtesy of The Davis Family
Pop Goodwin, seen here as champion at Claremont Speedway.

 


Courtesy of S. Fontana
Peanie Goodwin was not only a driver and member of the owning family; but, he was a successful lumberjack and builder.

ED GOULD PHOTOS - FROM GEORGE HILL


A feature start at
West Leb.

Pit work at
West Leb.

Car 13 and another
entry had "a awful accident".
Does this caption look familiar ?
Gould must have attended
the same day as whoever
took Fontana's shots.

 

There seemed to be
a lot of awful accidents.
I wonder how many got hurt
at West Leb.

The driver of
this car is said
to be Billy Byers.

Bringin' 'em in,
two at a time.

The West Leb
pit area. Mostly
different cars than
the Fontana shots.

Nice shot. It gives
you an idea of what spectators at West Leb saw for a show.

The driver of
this car is said
to be "Pop" Goodwin,
one of the track owners.

Courtesy of Robt. Morrill
Ray Sanborn, a
driver who raced at
many NH tracks.

 


Courtesy of Bill Baker
Northern Vermont star Harold "Cannonball" Baker had a rough debut at West Leb.

A FEW CLIPPINGS - FROM THE WHITE RIVER JCT LANDMARK AND OTHER PAPERS


White River Jct. Landmark
A May, 1950 result.

River News & Twin State News
A June, 1950 result.

White River Jct. Landmark
A June, 1950 result.
 

White River Jct. Landmark
An August 1950 result.

White River Jct. Landmark
A September, 1950 result.
 
White River Jct. Landmark
An October, 1950 result.  
 
Bradford United Opinion
Another 1951 article about the
success of Stub Piper with
George Barber's 46.

 
Bradford United Opinion
A 1951 article about the
success of Stub Piper with
George Barber's 46.
 
 


Bradford United Opinion
A homemade sign displayed somewhere in the community.


MORE SANDRA GOODWIN FONTANA CONTRIBUTIONS


Coming out of Four side
by side. Track looks loose
and difficult to run on.


Two men by their car.
The shot is very blurry.

Car F7 gets on the gas out of
Four. That seemed to be a
prominent car there.

Cars get on the gas.

A pickup gets crossed
up and pays the price.

Pop Goodwin leads.

Car 15 takes to the inside.

Car is overturned, very common
occurrence. I think a lot of them
got bogged down by thin tires
and loose rutty surface.


Men horse around by a coupe 15.
Usually 15 is seen as a sedan.

That same Car 15 in a lineup.

This car may had the audacity to hit
the poor, innocent ambulance.



Another car to ambulance view.

Car 18 gets in the ditch, a
very common predicament.

Car 202 in action.

This driver named "Bridgie"
contemplates his predicament.

Getting Bridgie's car
back on the wheels.

Pop Goodwin, in a later
car, goes by another
rollover.

Pop Goodwin posing by
the coupe I believe he later
drove at Claremont.

Pop Goodwin's earlier
sedan in the track's
inconvenient mud pool.

Pop Goodwin
going through
"the wall of fire",
a common stunt at
early tracks.


Peanie Goodwin, whose career was affected by a bout with polio later.


More of the Wall of FIre stunt.

Car F7 with wheel problems.

Cops looking a yet another rollover.

Off the track and
bogged down.

This shot shows how
bad the loose racing
surface was.


Peanie Goodwin [left]
possibly with Buster Hadlock.


A car that looks almost
street legal passes a car
overheating from all that
loose dirt in the radiator.


Cars All and 702 wreck.
View 1.

Cars All and 702 wreck.
View 2.

A pack comes out of 4.

Concession stand said to be run by grandmother Goodwin.


Track surface looks more groomed and firmer here.

Football helmet wearing driver looks to retrieve wheel.

One of the better overall views of the track.

A group of men on the track
to roll another car back over.

Said to be Peanie Goodwin, his future wife, and another
motorcycle guy.


Maurice Condon, about the closest thing to a pro in those days, in that area.

Rolling another one back over.

Rolling car F7 back over.

Rolling another one back over.


A view across the track, over the PA car.


Rollover off the track.

The track public address system mounted on a car. This is
not uncommon in this era.

Pop Goodwin getting a
trophy. What was with all
these motorcycle guys ?


A shaken up Pop Goodwin [white scarf] being nervously looked
over by his wife.

Rolling another one back over.
Even the cops helped out.

A view across an empy
infield.

Two entries take each other
out.

Spectators by some sort of
panel truck. It looks like a concession
or food truck.



Spectators by some sort of
 panel truck. It looks like a concession
or food truck.

A common fate at West Leb.

A two car wreck.

A race lineup ready to go.

A view across to the turns
and pit area.

The wreck of the
Car in honor of Myrtle.

Stackin' 'em up.

 

 


Courtesy of Historic Aerials

I finally found an aerial view of the track, taken in 1956. By then it wasn't operating.

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