Junkyard Find: 1960 Chevrolet Brookwood Two-door Wagon

Murilee Martin
by Murilee Martin
Once the original 1955-1957 Chevy Nomad two-door wagon became a sacred icon among those who prize Detroit machinery of the Eisenhower Era, all GM two-door wagons attained a certain prestige among those who enjoy cruise nights, car shows, Time Out dolls, and the 119,544th repetition of Hot Rod Lincoln (no, not the gloriously hillbilly original 1955 Charlie Ryan version, the still-excellent-but-now-overplayed 1971 Commander Cody version, which incorrectly refers to the souped-up Lincoln motor as a V8). I would have thought that a genuine two-door 1960 Biscayne wagon ought to have found someone willing to keep it on the street, but this car in a northeastern Colorado yard proves me wrong.
In the full-sized Chevrolet hierarchy of 1960, the Biscayne was considered cheap transportation, the Bel Air was a bit more flashy, and the luxurious Impala parked on the top of the pyramid. Each of these trim levels had a corresponding wagon version, with the Nomad, Kingswood, and Parkwood names going on the Bel Air and Impala wagons; the lowly Biscayne wagon got the Brookwood name.
The chassis build tag indicates that this car began its life at the St. Louis Assembly plant.
We’re looking at about the cheapest possible North American-market GM wagon for 1960, complete with two doors, three-on-the-tree manual transmission, manual brakes, manual steering, and the good old 235-cubic-inch straight-six engine, rated at 135 gross horsepower that year.
There’s some rust, probably from sitting outdoors with missing glass for decades and filling up with snow every winter. Maybe the two-door 1959-1960 Chevy wagon restorers are holding out for the Kingswoods.
McCook, Nebraska, lies just about 220 miles to the east of this car’s final parking space and about 650 miles to the west of its birthplace, so it appears that we’re looking at a car that spent most or all of its life on the Great Plains.
If you’re cheap, buy a Biscayne!If you like these junkyard posts, you can reach all 1,650+ right here at the Junkyard Home of the Murilee Martin Lifestyle Brand!
Murilee Martin
Murilee Martin

Murilee Martin is the pen name of Phil Greden, a writer who has lived in Minnesota, California, Georgia and (now) Colorado. He has toiled at copywriting, technical writing, junkmail writing, fiction writing and now automotive writing. He has owned many terrible vehicles and some good ones. He spends a great deal of time in self-service junkyards. These days, he writes for publications including Autoweek, Autoblog, Hagerty, The Truth About Cars and Capital One.

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  • Ajla Ajla on Jul 15, 2019

    "we may not have those lovable but poor crash worthy land yachts of the 50s and 60s" I disagree. The birds just turned into dinosaurs this time. tinyurl.com/y62u9yav tinyurl.com/y6gzao3c

    • JimC2 JimC2 on Jul 17, 2019

      "The birds just turned into dinosaurs this time." (chuckle) Yep!

  • Jeff S Jeff S on Jul 15, 2019

    We do have full size crew cab pickups which are today's equivalent of the Olds 98, Buick Electra 225, Cadillac Deville, Caprice, Lincoln Town Car, Grand Marquis, LTD, Imperial, Fury, and Polaris sans the enclosed trunk. So yes the land yachts became the large crew cabs.

  • Kwik_Shift_Pro4X The push for EV's is part of the increase in our premiums. Any damage near the battery pack and the car is a total loss.
  • Geozinger Up until recently this was on my short list of cars to replace my old car. However, it didn't pass the "knee test" with my wife as her bad knee makes it difficult for her to get in and out of a sedan. I saw a number of videos about the car and it seems like the real deal as a sporting sedan. In addition I like the low price, too, but it was bad luck/timing that we didn't get to pull the trigger on this one.
  • ToolGuy I agree with everyone here. Of course there are exceptions to what I just said, don't take everything so literally. The important thing is that I weighed in with my opinion, which is helping to move things forward. I believe we can all agree that I make an important contribution (some will differ, that is their prerogative). A stitch in time saves nine. Life isn't fair, you know. I have more to say but will continue at our next meeting. You can count on that, for I am a man of my word. We will make it happen. There might be challenges. I mean, it is what it is. This too shall pass. All we can do is all we can do. These meetings are never really long enough for me to completely express all the greatness within me, are they? Let's meet to discuss. All in a day's work. After all, Rome wasn't built in a day. At the end of the day, I must say I agree with you. I think you will agree. When all is said and done, there is more said than done. But of course that is just one man's opinion. You are free to disagree. As I like to say...(I am working on my middle management skills -- how am I doing?)
  • Golden2husky Have to say he did an excellent job on the C7, especially considering the limited budget he was given. I am very happy with my purchase.
  • Marty The problem isn't range; it's lack of electricity in multi-unit building parking. All you need is level 1 - a standard 120v wall socket - and if you're plugged in 10 hours overnight you get 280 miles per week or more. That's enough for most folks but you can use public charging to supplement when needed. Installing conduit circuits and outlets is simple and cheap; no charge stations needed.