The "Hitch Hiker's Depot" in 1939 was a bench under a sign at a gas station

In 1939, the owner of this gas station set up a waiting bench for hitchhikers. The sign above the bench let passing cars know that this is where they could pick up someone waiting to hitch a ride.

The photo, featuring three women waiting patiently with suitcases, looks like a joke by today's safety standards. Although the attitude towards hitchhiking has clearly changed (for good reason), this photo will always be an incredible piece of history. I hope someone, somewhere, has that sign hanging in their home.

From Instagram:

"Performing the role of the good Samaritan to the nation-wide fraternity of automobile hitch-hikers, the owner of a service station in Albion, Mich., established a hitchhikers' depot hard by his row of gasoline pumps in 1939.

Nailed to a tree, a large sign visible to approaching motorists at a good distance, identifies the spot, while a painted hand, with the thumb outstretched in the traditional manner, does the spade work for tired hikers."