Make us your home page

My First Car: '33 Austin; Mary S. Dobarganes, 90, St. Petersburg

'33 Austin

This is my yellow and black Austin when I was in the 10th grade at about age 15. We lived on Ninth Avenue N, which my father said was too dangerous for me as the street I would take to St. Pete High (on a bicycle). It was small compared with other cars back then.

I believe the Austins were built in England. They had 12-inch glass side windows and a well-designed cloth top made of canvas and held up by rods when needed. My father gave me 18 cents every Monday morning for gasoline — 1 gallon for the week (this gives an idea what the economy was then). I never ran out of fuel and never had any problem with the engine that I recall. Finally, I had to give up my beloved little car when it was time to enter Florida State University. It was a sad day for me when I heard that Dad had sold my car but "all good things must come to an end," they say. I had a wonderful marriage for 64 years. No complaints. It was a wonderful, happy life!

Do you have

a story?

Tell us about your first car. Please e-mail the following:

• Your name.

• City.

• Age (with your date of birth).

• Year, make and model of the car.

• A description of the car.

• A high-resolution photo (send it to drive@

Editor's note: We receive a large number of entries for this feature. It might be weeks or months before your car will appear in the paper.

My First Car: '33 Austin; Mary S. Dobarganes, 90, St. Petersburg 03/09/09 [Last modified: Monday, March 9, 2009 4:14pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Tampa is 15th-most popular city to move to with U-Haul


    TAMPA —Tampa is undoubtedly a destination point, at least according to U-Haul.

    Tampa is the No. 15 destination for people moving with U-Haul trucks. | Times file photo
  2. Florida's economy growing faster than other big states and far better than U.S. overall


    When it comes to economic growth, Florida's running alongside the leading states and well ahead of the United States as a whole.

  3. Westshore Marina District project takes shape with another acquisition

    Real Estate

    TAMPA — One of Tampa Bay's prime waterfront areas took another major step toward redevelopment Friday as WCI Communities bought 2.35 acres in Westshore Marina District.

    WCI Communities, Lennar's high-end subsidiary,has paid $2.5 million for 2.35 acres in the Westshore Marina District for 35 townhomes. WCI is under contract  to buy an additional 9.5 acres.
[BTI Partners]
  4. Posh Guy Harvey RV park to open in Tampa Bay with $250,000 cottages


    HOLIDAY — Love those Guy Harvey T-shirts with the soaring marlins? In the not too distant future, you might be able to kick back in your own Guy Harvey cottage in the first-ever Guy Harvey RV park.

    Renderings of the clubhouse and an RV cottage site of the planned Guy Harvey Outpost Club & Resort Tarpon Springs.
[Guy Harvey Outpost Collection]
  5. Port Tampa Bay secures $9 million grant to deepen Big Bend Channel


    Port Tampa Bay has secured a $9 million grant from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for the widening and deepening of the Big Bend Channel in southern Hillsborough County.