I was so amazed when I saw this that I had to blog it! So, having paid my $4 fee to CriticalPast here you go. Its from Louisiana in 1937 and shows the Marsh Buggy in action, an articulated amphibious rover.
The 'cleats' spanned across the tyres were added to give the vehicle more traction when crossing the marsh. They were either thick ropes or chains.
This vehicle is the same one that featured on the colour cover of Popular Science in 1937, which I blogged just before Christmas.
I suggested that it may have been the inspiration for the front and rear tyres of the articulated Project SWORD Scramble Bug toy pictured below on the left.
The articulated vehicle on the right is another possible inspiration for the Scramble Bug. It featured in the General Motors Futurama expo at the 1964/65 Worlds Fair. I blogged about it in detail in 2012. You can see it in action courtesy of the You Tube archive here.
General Motors tested many other articulated rover designs in the early Sixties like their SLRV [Surveyor Lunar Roving Vehicle] shown below in colour and also with one of its designers M.G. Bekker crouching down. The SLRV pictured from one end could almost be the Project SWORD Scramble Bug!
You can see footage of both the proposed deployment of the SLRV [ejected from a Lunar Lander] and articulation over rocks on JPL's own website here.
A different design, here's footage of this doughnut tyre GM concept again with articulation courtesy of You Tube. This design featured in children's publications during the Sixties.
My guess is that the Marsh Buggy inspired what came after it 25 to 30 years later and those smart designers like Bekker and others at GM and co. made it moon-worthy. In 1967 Century 21 Toys eventually captured their roving spirit for us kids in the play room in the shape of the Project SWORD Scramble Bug.
What do you think readers?