09 Nov

Watkins Glen Motor Racing Research Center looks toward future growth


WATKINS GLEN, NY –The International Motor Racing Research Center (IMRRC) is looking to the future with expansion and growth in mind.

Center President J.C. Argetsinger said while the governing board has not yet reached a consensus on the expansion, he noted they are looking at a 10,000 square-foot facility to go along with their existing 5,000 square-foot building. He also added there has been some talk by the board about possibly making the expansion larger than 10,000 square-feet. Argetsinger said the center owns the former playground next-door, adding the new expansion will most likely be at that location.

“We could certainly use more space,” Argetsinger said. “It all depends on how much money we want to raise.”


The Racing Research Center is an archival and research library working with the materials of motorsports history. Its collections encompass race series and racing venues worldwide. No admission fee or fee to use the collections on-site is charged.
The center opened in June 1999 and has more than 700 individual collections. It has more than 3,800 rare and reference books, more than 2,800 cataloged race programs, some 4,500 cataloged films and about 800 periodical titles, some full-run. Photographs in the collections number in the tens of thousands.

Argetsinger mentioned there would be some display at the new facility, but noted it would be primarily for additional research space. He said he does not anticipate being more than one or two cars on display, but added some board members would like to see more on display.

“People will erroneously say we are a museum,” Argetsinger said. “We really are a library.”


Argetsinger noted one of the reasons for needing more space is because almost every time the center gets a new major contribution of materials to archive, they will receive more donations of historically significant items. Racing Research Center collections encompass race series and racing venues worldwide. The Center is the repository for several organizational archives, including the Sports Car Club of America and the Road Racing Drivers Club. The Center owns the archives of National Speed Sport News and the archives of John Bishop, co-founder of IMSA.

Another one of the center’s goals Argetsinger mentioned included the digitization of much of their archived records for easier storage and accessibility. He noted the new executive director would be charged with finding the funding to achieve this goal as well.

“Digitization will help with space, but we also want to keep the originals,” Argetsinger said.

Argetsinger said the need for space is not as great as it once was, as the racing center has been able to do things like rent space with the county for their documents. However, he added the architect they have been working with commented with the way the center is growing, they could be looking for more space in another 15 years as well. As a result, the IMRCC is seeking a full-time executive director to lead the funding efforts for the expansion.


“The Racing Research Center has achieved international success well beyond the expectations of its founders,” Center Governing Council Chairman Bobby Rahal said. “To build on that success, we’re ready to progress to the next levels in all areas of our operations and even better fulfill our mission of preserving and sharing the history of racing.”

For more about the Racing Research Center, visit the website at www.racingarchives.org.
Source Watkins Glen Review & Express
Photos International Motor Racing Research Center


11 Oct

Winning: The Racing Life of Paul Newman; Special Movie Screening in Norwalk October 28th


On Wednesday, October 28th at 6:30 PM, the New England Auto Museum will host a special one-night screening of the acclaimed documentary Winning: The Racing Life of Paul Newman at the Stepping Stones Multi-Media Gallery at Mathews Park in Norwalk. The event will raise funds for the non-profit New England Auto Museum, a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to providing a permanent facility for display and education in automotive arts and technology.

“Paul Newman had a special association with Connecticut,” according to NEAM President Mike Scheidel, “as one of the most prolific and revered actors in American Cinema, as well as through his philanthropy with Newman’s Own and the Hole-in-the-Wall Camps, but what is not so well known is his passionate love for auto racing which became a focus of his life for 35 years.”

That passion is well on display in the documentary, co-produced by Adam Corolla and Nate Adams which recounts how Newman became bit by the racing bug when he starred in the 1969 film “Winning”at the age of forty-seven and continued until shortly before his death at age eighty-three in 2008.

Providing commentary and Q&A after the film, which is 83 minutes in length, will be Sherman, Conn. resident and Paul Newman’s long-term racing partner Bob Sharp. Newman drove for Bob Sharp Racing for many years, winning the Sports Car Club of America National Championship four times. Bob Sharp is among the many friends and fellow competitors interviewed in the film. Others include Robert Redford, who became one of Newman’s closest friends, his “Winning” co-star Robert Wagner; Jay Leno, no small car enthusiast himself; racers Mario Andretti and Patrick Dempsey, and Pixar founding member John Lasseter, who directed the actor in his final film role, voicing the tailor-made character of Doc Hudson in the animated film “Cars.”

In its review, the Hollywood Reporter lauded the film, describing the “archival footage of Newman racing and interacting with his fellow drivers as revelatory, with the actor’s determined efforts to be just one of the guys on ample display. One of the film’s most affecting moments is a haunting shot of the actor sitting mournfully in his car immediately after the death of his teammate Jim Fitzgerald during a 1987 race. As passionate about its subject as the actor was about driving, Winning: The Racing Life of Paul Newman provides a fascinating footnote to his distinguished cinematic career.”

The special one-night showing of “Winning: The Racing Life of Paul Newman” will take place Wednesday, October 28th from 6:30 to 9:30 PM.  Beverages provided by Nicholas Roberts Fine Wines of Darien and hors d’oeuvres will be served in the hour before the show. There will also be classic cars on display in the courtyard courtesy of Dragone Classic Motorcars, one of the event’s sponsors. Location will be the Stepping Stones Museum Multi-Media Gallery at 303 West Avenue in Norwalk (Mathews Park). Other sponsors of the event include Hagerty Insurance, Pray Auto Body, Pray Achievement Center & Pray Auto Museum and Spacefitters Logistics & Technology Group. Tickets will be $25 per person and space is limited to 150 attendees. Tickets can be purchased atwww.neautomuseum.org

22 Jun

Sun Shines on Father’s Day Car Show in Norwalk

Jon Hammond with his sons Ben 6 and Dylan 2 enjoy the New England Auto Museum's Father's Day car show Sunday at Mathews Park.

Jon Hammond with his sons Ben 6 and Dylan 2 enjoy the New England Auto Museum’s Father’s Day car show Sunday at Mathews Park.

Posted: Sunday, June 21, 2015 4:15 pm
By FRANCIS CARR Jr. Hour Staff Writer
link to original article in The Hour

Norwalk, CT - Classic car enthusiasts, antique collectors and spectators gathered for the 10th annual Darien Collectors Car Show for the show’s first year in its new Mathews Park location.

The Darien Collectors Car Show takes place on Father’s Day each year. Despite morning showers that delayed the start of the show, the clouds parted and Mathews Park was crowded with cars and families by noon. Sixteen awards were presented to car owners throughout the day.


Mayor Harry Rilling was on hand to present the Mayor’s Choice award, which went to Parker and Gwen Ackley, of Fairfield, and their 1915 Dodge Brothers Touring Car, the oldest in the show. “He likes the really old cars,” said Gwen Ackley, noting that the prize was a toss-up between her car and a 1926 Ford Model T owned by Don and Peggy Morey of Norwalk.

The Ackleys, who appeared in period dress, drove their hundred-year-old Dodge from Fairfield to Norwalk on Route 136 in the rain. “When we got to Sherwood Island, the sun came out, and we were like, ‘Yay!'” Gwen Ackley told The Hour.

The Ackleys are history buffs, and live in a house crammed with vintage clothing, Victrolas and old radios. They acquired their car on an excursion to Hoffman’s Barn antique store in Red Hook, N.Y., near the Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome where the pair were volunteers. The store owner had placed the car in his store to create ambiance, and was reluctant to sell it.

A week later, the Ackleys returned to inquire again. “This car got so much attention in the shop that it was driving (the owner) crazy,” Gwen Ackley said. The car was theirs. “We were very naïve, but luckily we got a great car.”

One of the event’s featured cars was Vinny Lyons’s 1968 Ford Mustang 238 Cobra Jet, one of only 50 such race cars built by Ford and sent to car dealerships as a promotion. At the time, Lyons was a service manager at Rye Ford in Rye, N.Y., and he began driving the car in drag races to promote his dealership. In 1969, Lyons acquired the car for $1,000, and has continued to race it. Today, Lyons drives in about three races per year, in Beaver Springs, P.A., Lebanon Valley, N.Y. and Englishtown, N.J., Lyons told The Hour.

This year’s car show was a fundraiser for the New England Auto Museum planned for Norwalk, said Auto Museum Marketing Director Nick Ord. Proceeds from car entry fees would go to support museum costs, Ord said.

Fathers, for their part, said they planned to relax and spend time with family. Ben Djiounas and daughter Morgan, 2, said they were enjoying themselves, although Djiounas said he is “not intimately” acquainted with cars or car culture. Djiounas said he planned to barbecue with family later in the day. Eric Brean, “absolutely” a car fan, and daughter Amelia, 4, planned to spend the afternoon relaxing. “We’ll probably go out to lunch, and then go home,” Brean told The Hour.

Hour photos/Matthew Vinci

Hour photos/Matthew Vinci

14 Jun

New England Auto Museum eyeing Riverview Plaza as home

Hour File Photo/Alex von Kleydorff. Press conference in March of 2014 at Dragone Classic Automibiles in Wesport to announce Norwalk's New England Auto Museum

Hour File Photo/Alex von Kleydorff. Press conference in March of 2014 at Dragone Classic Automobiles in Wesport to announce Norwalk’s New England Auto Museum

Hour Staff Writer | Posted: Saturday, June 13, 2015 3:30 pm

NORWALK –Riverview Plaza on Belden Avenue could become the home of the New England Auto Museum.

New England Auto Museum (NEAM), a nonprofit organization founded to preserve, interpret and exhibit automobiles and automotive artifacts, has selected Norwalk as the future home of a museum and educational facility, according to its website. And at this point, the organization has its sights set on Riverview Plaza at 24 Belden Ave.

“We’re hoping we could renovate it,” NEAM marketing director Nick Ord told The Hour. “We want the display space to be where the mall was, which is ground floor, and then the upstairs five floors would be educational.”

The New England Auto Museum would feature 100 automobiles, an education center and automotive academy co-sponsored by Norwalk Community College and the Norwalk Public Schools P-Tech Program, and draw 100,000 to 150,000 visitors annually, according to NEAM.

Ord’s comments came at City Hall on Tuesday evening after the Norwalk Redevelopment Commission approved a $13,000 grant toward an assessment to determine whether such a museum would be viable in the Norwalk area.

“It’s not so much location but to verify that we have economic rationale to proceed,” Ord told commissioners. Commissioners approved thegrant after requesting that Norwalk be the focus of the assessment.

Ord said NEAM has explored East Hartford, Bristol, Southington as possible locations for the auto museum but all fell through. In Norwalk, the organization earlier eyed Loehmann’s Plaza on West Avenue. White Oak Associates Museum Planners and Producers will perform the assessment at a cost of $65,000.

Ord said NEAM has applied for $32,500 in funding from the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development and will attempt to raise $19,500 in private donations to cover the balance of the assessment cost. NEAM has until Feb. 2, 2016, to secure all funding.

Riverview Plaza was once home to a Pathmark Supermarket and the Norwalk Social Security office. The building is now vacant, Ord said. According to NEAM, Riverview Plaza offers an “easy access to major arteries as well as convenient bus transportation for visitors to all areas of Norwalk.”

NEAM was founded in 2007 by Michael and Christine Scheidel to “celebrate the automobile and its significant impact on our culture through the preservation and exhibition of automobiles and historical artifacts,” according to its website.

According to NEAM, Norwalk is the ideal location for an auto museum: the city is at the crossroads of Interstate 95, Route 7 and Metro-North Railroad, lies an hour from Manhattan at the gateway to New England, and has other museums (The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk and Stepping Stones Museum for Children) that attract more than 1.3 million visitors annually.

In addition, Norwalk is surrounded by the nation’s wealthiest zip codes.
“Norwalk’s New England location will draw current and future automobile enthusiasts from a wide area and provide a gathering spot for the region’s extensive and active automotive community,” according to NEAM.

The conceptual plan has received endorsements from, among others, Mayor Harry W. Rilling and Norwalk Community College President David L. Levinson.

“The museum’s presence in Norwalk will not only be a major tourist attraction in its own right, but will provide a venue for an automotive technology program that we will offer in tandem with the Norwalk Public Schools,” Levinson wrote.

Rilling, in a letter this month, congratulated NEAM in advance for its 10th annual Darien Collectors Car Show, which is scheduled for Sunday, June 21, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., at Mathews Park in Norwalk. The event is expected to bring more than 100 collector cars.

The mayor welcomed the prospect of Norwalk becoming the home of NEAM’s automotive museum. “It will serve both as an educational center as well as display center to highlight an ever changing evolution of car history and technological development,” he wrote.

Hour Photo/Alex von Kleydorff. New England Auto Racers Hall of Fame member and national champion driver, Connecticut's Bob Sharp speaks as New England Auto Museum Founder and CEO Mike Scheidel holds a press conference at Dragone Classic Automobiles in Westport in March 2014.

Hour Photo/Alex von Kleydorff. New England Auto Racers Hall of Fame member and national champion driver, Connecticut’s Bob Sharp speaks as New England Auto Museum Founder and CEO Mike Scheidel holds a press conference at Dragone Classic Automobiles in Westport in March 2014.

Link to actual article


05 May

Flashback: The Melton Auto Museum opened in Norwalk, Connecticut on July 24, 1948


By Margo Melton Nutt
Reprinted from February 11, 2011

Norwich, VT – Although I have talked some in previous posts about the James Melton Autorama in Florida, I haven’t said much about its precursor, the Melton Museum in Norwalk Connecticut (1948-53). So here goes:

Back in the summer of 1941, the State of Connecticut had appropriated funds to build a museum for my father’s cars. But the onset of World War II put the project on hold. After the war the agreement still did not come to fruition. As he put it in a letter to fellow Veteran Motor Car Club members in 1947:

“As you may have seen by the papers, I have withdrawn my offer of a museum collection to the State of Connecticut. The first appropriation was made in 1941, the enlarged appropriation in 1945, and the thing is still only on paper…The combination of dilly-dallying techniques, small brother groups crying over locations, appointment of an antique auto curator—repeat curator!—and the shifting sands of politics—of which I want no part—finally made me decide that it would be in the best interests of my collection and the antique automobile movement as a whole, to cut out of all that complicated and unpleasant situation…I shall create a museum of which we can all be proud—and where we won’t wake up some morning to find some Politico’s Aunt Tillie’s 1928 Model A Ford where a Mercer Raceabout ought to be.”

Rather than donating his collection to the State in return for the building, he continued to own the cars—and to add to their number until he had close to a hundred. He formed a corporation, The Melton Museum, Inc., and acquired a 10,000 square foot building on an eight-acre site on Route 7 in Norwalk, Connecticut, half a mile from the Merritt Parkway (where Wal-Mart is today). To that he added another 10,000 square foot building, incorporating an existing well-known restaurant, called the Stirrup Cup. On top of the building with the sign saying The Melton Museum, he put brightly painted cutouts of some of the cars represented in the collection; out front he placed a 1902 trolley car. He sincerely believed that everyone was as interested in the history of the automobile as he was. He felt that preserving the cars was only half the story, they should be shown to the public as examples of man’s ingenuity and as the beautiful antiques they were.

On July 24, 1948, the 20,000 square foot Melton Museum of Antique Automobiles opened in Norwalk, with fifty-five cars, antique bicycles, auto accessories, toy trains and music boxes. Opening day began with a parade of antique autos, driven by his confreres from the Veteran Motor Car Club, and was attended by celebrities such as Clare Booth Luce, Lawrence Tibbett and Connecticut Governor Grover Whelan. Twelve hundred paying customers came the first day, sixteen hundred the second. Little did many of the visitors know what a huge, last-minute effort had gone into readying the exhibition for opening day? Firestone, for instance, had agreed to equip all the cars with their new “non-skid” tires—the words formed the tread design. The tires had been flown in by air freight from Akron, Ohio the day before the museum opened, and Firestone men had worked until 2 A.M. to mount them all. For months my mother had been a willing helper in preparing the museum, haunting local antiques stores in search of the right accouterments to accompany the displays, and raiding friends’ and relatives’ attics for old-fashioned costumes for the mannequins to wear. She also oversaw many museum-related details on the home front while her husband was on tour with the Metropolitan Opera that spring.

Their old friend, former Ziegfeld designer, John Harkrider, designed the exhibits. The entrance hall was decorated with large photos of my father’s various old car exploits with other celebrities: the 1937 Easter Parade of antique autos down Fifth Avenue with fellow singers Lanny Ross and Jessica Dragonette as passengers; Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy riding in one of the cars my father took to Hollywood in 1944; and a meeting with Henry Ford Sr. in Dearborn, Michigan. The cashier’s office was in a 1912 Renault Hansom Cab, the car’s radiator having been converted to a counter for selling tickets. (Admission to the museum was 60 cents.) One exhibit room had a parade of vehicles filled with cap-and-duster clad mannequins intended to look as if they were driving down a country road. Another room had eight racing cars displayed in an octagonal pattern; one of the cars was a 1911 Mercedes which was accompanied by a huge photographic blowup of Ralph DePalma driving that very car in the 1911 Vanderbilt Cup Race. In yet another room, the sign in front of the 1910 White Touring Car explained the origins of the collection, “The ambition of a small boy to own a car like this is what started the whole thing.”

He hired a retired Norwalk policeman—Officer Phillip O’Grady—as the security guard. Dressed like a turn of the century Keystone Kop, O’Grady was straight out of central casting, and played his part to the hilt. Among the summer help my father hired was Joe Ryan, still only in high school, to polish brass and run errands. Over fifty years later, among the highlights Ryan recalled was a trip to Canada to pick up a 1924 Rolls Royce that Lady Eaton had donated to the museum. “Between being held up at the border for two days because Customs didn’t accept the paperwork I carried, (they had to verify it with both Lady Eaton and your father), and the fact the headlights were so dim I could only drive in daylight, it took me five days to get the car back to Norwalk.” His job at the Melton Museum started Ryan’s lifelong love of automobiles that evolved into his career as sales manager of a Mercedes Benz agency.

The oldest car in the Melton Museum was 1893 custom steam stage coach, which looked rather like a horse-drawn carriage with engines added front and rear. The most modern car in the museum was a 1934 custom-built Detroit Electric. Other unusual pieces in the collection were aforementioned 1911 Mercedes of Vanderbilt Cup Race fame, a 1900 Rockwell Hansom Cab—the first New York City taxi— and a 12-passenger Stanley Steamer Mountain Wagon circa 1915, formerly used in Yellowstone National Park for sightseeing tours.

Margo Melton Nutt’s memoirs of her father “James Melton: The Tenor of His Times” is available at Amazon.com

James Melton (left) at the Hershey Meet in 1958 beside a 1910 Thomas Flyer

James Melton (left) at the Hershey Meet in 1958 beside a 1910 Thomas Flyer

James Melton driving his 1907 Rolls Royce Silver Ghost (Chassis No. 60565)

James Melton driving his 1907 Rolls Royce Silver Ghost (Chassis No. 60565)


30 Apr

The SAAB Racing Spirit Lives On: Special Exhibit at Simeone Museum May 9-24

Philadelphia, PA – Once again, The Simeone Automotive Museum will be having a display of SAAB cars opening on May 9th, to run for two weeks. The previous 2013 show, “The SAAB Spirit Lives On” had record-breaking attendance and the museum is hoping to surpass that with another great show dedicated to the distinguished racing history of the iconic Swedish marque.

This year’s exhibit, “The SAAB Racing Spirit Lives On” will have a comprehensive display of SAAB’s with racing provenance. Along with the collection owned by Bill Jacobson of Sports Car Service, the exhibition will include two Quantum racers from the Vapaa Vintage Racing group, the 1999 9-3 winner of 2015 14-hours of Road Atlanta, and many other examples of the breed.



The show will kick off with a Launch Party at the Museum on Saturday, May 9th, from 6:00 – 9:00 pm. Guest speakers at the reception will be Jack Lawrence of Motor Sport Service and Jack Baxter of S&J Automotive. Both will have their SAAB’s displayed at the show and will share with attendees their stories of SAAB racing experiences. The SAAB Racing exhibit will run until May 24th.


The Simeone Automotive Museum – Located near Philadelphia International Airport, at 6825 Norwich Drive, the Simeone Automotive Museum is open six days a week. Admission is $12 for adults, $10 for seniors, and $8 for students and free for children ages eight and under. Group rates are available, and complete details are can be found at the museum’s website.



Photos Courtesy Simeone Automotive Foundation

Photos Courtesy Simeone Automotive Foundation


17 Mar

Classic Cars and Memorabilia Museum opens in Oyster Bay, NY


Oyster Bay, NY – “It’s a combination of a gas station, Disneyland and a man cave,” owner and Oyster Bay resident David Jacobson says. “Long Island has a tremendous car culture. I thought Oyster Bay was a natural fit.” Enter the showcase and you are faced with a collection of 17 cars displayed behind velvet ropes, and more than 1,000 automotive signs hanging all over.

“I like old stuff,” says Jacobson, 51. “We wanted everything to be as authentic as possible. It represents a different time.” Cars range from a 1974 Ferrari 365 GT4 — the first 12-cylinder mid-engine Ferrari ever made — to a 1965 Volkswagen bus to a 1953 Chevrolet 5 window pickup truck. There’s even a 1958 BMW Isetta, which Jacobson found in Oregon.

“The Isetta is loud and obnoxious,” Jacobson says. “It feels like a motorcycle with a shell around it.” There’s a 1932 black Ford Roadster, completely restored. “This is one of the most fun cars you will ever ride in,” Jacobson says, grinning. The cars — most are owned by Jacobson, but a few are on loan from fellow collectors — will be rotated every four to six weeks to keep the display fresh. As the owner of GrooveCar auto buying service, he knows something about the allure of a good ride.

“Cars identify people. They can tell a lot about the personality of someone,” Jacobson says. “I’m a Porsche guy.” Among his personal collection: a 1960 signal red Porsche 356, a 1973 Porsche Carrera RS (which he deems “the Mona Lisa of Porsches”) plus a very rare 1995 Porsche Carrera RS, one of only five in the country. (Comedian Jerry Seinfeld has one as well.)


While some may come purely to check out the wheels, there’s a service area where you can get your vehicle hand washed for $29.99 or a full detailing from $250 to $1,000. Annual club membership ($150-$500) allows access to a lounge area and the first floor, where more cars are on display and a working slot car racetrack is available for members only. The museum also is hosting catered events for up to 100 people, from adult birthday parties to corporate events to fundraisers.

Mark Tulley, 65, of Carle Place serves as the regional director of the National Corvette Restorers Society, which will hold its annual general membership meeting in the space next month. For the event, Jacobson will have a host of Corvettes on display, ranging from 1953 to 1982. “There’s nothing like this on Long Island,” says Tulley. “It’s like an adult toy store.”

Dominick Randazzo, 45, of Bayville has been watching construction take place over the past two years and stops in for a peek on a recent Saturday afternoon. “I didn’t know what to expect, but it’s quite nice,” says Randazzo, who drove a 1969 Dodge Coronet RT while growing up. “It’s a lot to take in.”

Jason Roske, 35, of North Bellmore is amazed by the atmosphere of the showroom. “The work they put into this place is crazy,” says Roske, a self-described muscle car guy. “This is what we grew up on. What little kid doesn’t play with Matchbox cars? Now these are the life-size versions.”


WHEN | WHERE 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Thursdays and 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturdays, 85 Pine Hollow Rd., Oyster Bay
INFO 516-802-5297, collectorcarshowcase.com
ADMISSION $7 ($10 adult and child age 8-15)


Source: New York Newsday

25 Feb

Calling all wagons: AACA Museum planning longroof celebration opening May 23

The museum exhibit will pay tribute to many rare station wagons, including the Edsel Villager. Photos by Jay Ramey

The museum exhibit will pay tribute to many rare station wagons, including the Edsel Villager. Photos by Jay Ramey

Hershey, PA – The Antique Automobile Club of America Museum will host an exhibition celebrating that once-essential American automotive workhorse, the station wagon. Before this body style was pushed out by minivans, SUVs and crossovers, millions of family truckers, some with faux-wood siding, filled our roads and driveways. Just two decades ago we probably would have never guessed that the Buick Roadmaster and its Oldsmobile twin that were sold through the middle of the 1990s would be the swan song for traditional full-size American station wagons.

The AACA Museum’s exhibition will take a look back at the age of the station wagon with a special exhibition titled “A Family Affair: Station Wagons” opening May 23, 2015, the weekend of the Carlisle Import and Kit Nationals in nearby Carlisle, PA.

The Museum has a wish list of cars it would like to exhibit, and wants to hear from owners of these examples who would be willing to lend their longroofs to the museum for five months.


HemmingsBlog reports that so far the museum has just over a dozen confirmed examples ranging from a 1958 Edsel Villager to a Ford Pinto Rallye, but it needs help filling out the rest of the lineup. The museum seeks a variety of woody wagons and coachbuilt shooting brakes from Aston Martin, Bentley, Rolls-Royce, and a few others.

The full wish list, reproduced below, can also be found on the AACA Museum website, so if you have one of these or know someone who does, and would be willing to loan it to the museum for the exhibition, contact the AACA. The exhibit itself will run May 23-Oct. 12 at the AACA Museum in Hershey, PA.

Here are the station wagons that the AACA museum is looking for:

  • Volvo P1800ES/ PV544
  • Citroen DS/Ami
  • Chevrolet Vega
  • Ford Pinto
  • AMC Pacer/Hornet
  • Ford County Squire
  • Chrysler Town & Country
  • 1984 Dodge Caravan/Plymouth Voyager
  • Oldsmobile Vista Cruiser
  • Chevrolet Corvair
  • Mercedes 300TD
  • Rolls-Royce/Bentley/Aston Martin Shooting Break
  • Fiat 128/131
  • Edsel
  • National Lampoon Family Vacation’s “Family Truckster”
  • Checker
  • Variety of Woodies
  • Volkswagen Squareback
  • Dodge Aries/Plymouth Reliant
  • Custom Mustang/Corvette/Firebird
  • Nash Rambler
  • Studebaker Wagonaire
  • SAAB 95

Source: Jay Ramey – Associate Editor with Autoweek

wagon3 wagon4 wagon5

22 Jan

AACA Museum opens Lotus: The Art of Lightness January 24


Hershey, PA- The Antique Automobile Club of America (AACA) Museum presents Lotus: The Art of Lightness from January 24-April 26 2015. This compelling exhibit offers a selection of Lotus road cars and racing cars throughout their 66 year history covering over 15 models from a 1956 Mark VI to the 2014 Evora and also includes representative examples of Lotus engineered vehicles.

Colin Chapman, the founder of Lotus, and the man behind Lotus’ racing successes and iconic road cars said “I believe in getting light weight through elegance of design” translated through folklore as the mantra ‘Simplify and add lightness’. In today’s automotive world, making vehicles lighter is the newest method to extract efficiency and performance. But for Colin Chapman and Lotus it has always been the essence of their design and engineering philosophy.

The first Lotus came from the humblest of sources. In 1948 Colin Chapman, a young engineering student, became enthused with automotive competition and sought to enter the unique world of British Trials competition. The basis for this was an Austin Seven “Chummy”, an antiquated pre-war people’s car that Chapman transformed into his first competition special, dubbed Lotus. His forays into competition were successful and led to the formation of Lotus Engineering by 1954. It didn’t take long for Lotus Engineering to be in full production of bespoke Chapman designed chassis and Lotus subsequently invaded and triumphed in the world of British Club racing and international motorsports competition.

Since those early days, Lotus and the genius of Colin Chapman have been at the forefront of racing technology and automotive design. Colin Chapman’s philosophy of light weight, efficiency of design and innovation resulted in seven Formula 1 World Championships as well as wins at Le Mans and Indianapolis and championships in Saloon car racing, the World Rally Championship, sports car racing and the lower open wheel formulas. Colin Chapman’s philosophy of simplification, light weight and the least amount of parts effectively deployed that went into his racing car design were directly translated into Lotus’ road cars and produced a pantheon of iconoclastic machines such as the Seven, Elite, Elan, Cortina, Europa, Esprit, Elise, Exige, and Evora, truly making them “racing cars for the road”.

In addition to producing class-leading sports cars, Lotus has become a globally respected automotive engineering consultancy, working with many of the world’s most prestigious car manufacturers. Their expertise in ride and handling has made Lotus the standard to which all others are compared.

About the AACA Museum:
The Antique Automobile Club of America Museum, a Smithsonian Affiliate, displays beautifully restored automobiles, buses and motorcycles in unique life-like scenes representing the 1890s – 1980s in a cross-country journey from New York to San Francisco. This Museum, a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization, is known to be one of the largest automotive museums. Special exhibits change several times a year and focus on a variety of eras and types of vehicles. The Museum is in South Hanover Township, located just off Route 39, one mile west of Hersheypark Drive, Hershey, Pennsylvania. Regular admission $12, seniors age 61 and older $11, juniors age 4-12 $9, children age 3 and under are FREE. The Museum is open daily from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Special Note: There will be an opening reception for this exhibit on Friday, January 23rd from 6-9 PM. Tickets are available for $15 per person and can be purchased online or by calling the ticket counter at 717-566-7100 ext. 100.


Images courtesy of Michael Furman

07 Nov

Klingberg at the 2014 CT International Car Show Nov. 21 – 23

Governor Dan Malloy with a Connecticut-made Pope-Hartford

Governor Dan Malloy with a Connecticut-made Pope-Hartford

New Britain, CT – Once again, Klingberg Family Centers is invited by the Connecticut Automobile Retailers Association to create a display of antique vehicles for their annual car show at the CT Convention Center in Hartford on November 21-23. The exhibit last year featured four exquisite and rather rare examples of early 20th century vehicles from the collections of area enthusiasts who support the annual Klingberg Vintage Festival.

1934 Lincoln, 1905 Ford, 1903 Pope-Hartford, 1905 Stevens-Duryea

1934 Lincoln, 1905 Ford, 1903 Pope-Hartford,
1905 Stevens- Duryea

The group included a 1903 Pope-Hartford manufactured in the capitol city and a 1905 Stevens Duryea made in Chicopee, MA both owned by Jerry Chase.  Also on display was one of 38 remaining 1905 Ford Model Fs, owned by Carlton Pate. You couldn’t help but stop and gaze at a 1934 Lincoln Brunn Convertible Victoria which is one of only 12 made and one of three known to still exist. This gorgeous car was recently purchased by Wayne Carini of Chasing Classic Cars. Wayne was on hand on Sunday of the show to greet those who stopped by the exhibit.  And, nearly everyone did stop by all three days of the event. The exhibit was positioned right at the entrance to the auto show in a wonderful, spacious location.

Klingberg Family Centers’ involvement started five years ago when the Association wanted to feature several Connecticut-made automobiles from the early 1900s. They turned to Mark Johnson, Klingberg’s Vice President of Development and organizer of the annual Vintage Motorcar Festival in June. Since then, the Automotive Retailers have served as a Gold Sponsor of the Klingberg event.

1934 Lincoln Brunn Convertible Victoria

1934 Lincoln Brunn Convertible Victoria

Source: Klingberg News