art arfons green monster


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Samuel Hawley is a writer of narrative nonfiction and fiction. His books are highly eclectic. He has written about 16th-century East Asian history, 19th-century Korean-American relations, Olympic sprinting and land speed racing and a circus elephant named Topsy who was electrocuted in 1903. He lives in Kingston, Ontario.


Art Arfons Green Monster 1954
Art Arfons racing his and Walt's Green Monster #2 dragster in 1954. (courtesy Tom Joswick)

Art Arfons Green Monster 1954
Art (in white helmet) with Green Monster #2, 1954. (courtesy Tom Joswick)

Art Arfons Green Monster 1954
Art, victorious in Green Monster, gets a kiss from a beauty queen circa 1954. (courtesy Tom Joswick)

art arfons green monster 4
Art going to town in Green Monster #2. The Monster's teeth, painted on by Art's mother Bessie, can clearly be seen - as can Art's protective clothing: a T-shirt. (courtesy Tom Joswick)

art walt arfons green monster dragster
Green Monster #2 in front of the Arfons Mills store, Art at the wheel, Walt tuning the engine. Note the dragster's double rear wheels, and the store sign: "Hog Feed". (courtesyTom Joswick)

art walt arfons green monster number 5
Art behind the wheel of his and Walt's Green Monster #5 in 1957. GM #5 is the only dragster built by the Arfons brothers that is still in existence. It was restored and is now owned by Jon Rowley. Check out Jon's website,, for lots of photos of the car and other neat stuff. (courtesy Jon Rowley)

art arfons anteater
Art Arfons' first land speed racer, the wheel-driven Anteater, at Bonneville in 1960, young Wendover native David Christensen posing behind. (courtesy Ron Christensen)

Art Arfons Cyclops 1962
Art Arfons' second land speed car, the J-47 jet-powered Cyclops, Bonneville, 1962. (courtesy Ron Christensen)

art arfons cyclops
Cyclops' front end with its off-the-rack tires. (courtesy Ron Christensen)

art arfons cyclops bonneville
Cyclops again, Bonneville, 1962. (courtesy Ron Christensen)

art arfons bonneville cyclops jet dragster
Here's a nice shot of Art Arfons' Cyclops jet dragster at Bonneville, 1962, that was taken by Mel Ellis. The guy without the shirt is possibly Charlie Mayenschein, judging from the flat-top crew cut. (courtesy Mel Ellis)

art arfons cyclops jet dragster bonneville salt flats 1962
This shot of Cyclops at Bonneville in '62 was sent along by Burly Burlile of Mendon, Utah.  Note the headlight installed in the nose, useful in the shut-down area at drag strips, which were typically unlit after sundown. You can also see clearly here how Art sat in an open cockpit right in the air intake duct of the J-47 engine--between a rock and a hard place, you might say, at 300+ mph. And here's an interesting note for you photography buffs: Burly took this photo with his mother's 1913 Kodak expandable camera! (courtesy Burly Burlile)

art arfons cyclops jet car bonneville salt flats
Here's another shot of Art Arfons' Cyclops at Bonneville in August 1962. This and the four photos that follow were taken and sent to me by Dennis Jones of Jones Custom Lettering & Pin Striping in Whittier, California. Dennis has been around land speed racing and cool cars for over half a century. He started out doing the lettering on Dr. Nathan Ostich's Flying Caduceus--twice!--first on the original tailless version of the jet car in 1960, then again after a tail was added in 1963. Thanks for getting in touch, Dennis! (courtesy Dennis Jones)

art arfons salt flats cylops
A rear view of Art Arfons' Cyclops, showing the J-47 jet engine's exhaust. Photo taken during Speed at the Bonneville Salt Flats,  August 1962. (courtesy Dennis Jones)

art arfons open cockpit land speed car cyclops
Front view of Cyclops, August 1962. The racing tires--provided by Firestone--haven't been installed yet.  (courtesy Dennis Jones)

art arfons land speed racer cyclops
A color shot of Cyclops being towed, August 1962, Art in the cockpit, Firestone racing tires installed. (courtesy Dennis Jones)

speed week 1962 bonneville salt flats art arfons cyclops
Another Cyclops shot, spectators standing around (courtesy Dennis Jones)

arfons green monster mayenschein model
Charlie Mayenschein's model of what would come next, with what looks like a snow bank behind it. This shot was maybe taken in Charlie's driveway. (courtesy Tom Mayenschein)

hawley speed duel

copyright 2011 Samuel Hawley