Our newest addition to the collection is this 1956 Continental Mark II, donated to America’s Car Museum by Steve Boone, owner of Northwest Harley Davidson in Lacy, WA. Steve, who has been a tireless LeMay- America's Car Museum supporter, is a member of the Museum's Board of Directors and the Chairperson of ACM’s Collection Committee.
The Mark II is a beautiful display example of Ford’s forward thinking in engineering design and attention to quality. When Steve acquired the car he said it caught his eye for its sleek look and luxury interior. “I thought it was just a beautiful car!”, Steve tells us.
Over the past couple of months, ACM’s Avanti has undergone some major changes and our monthly updates on the ACM’s Collection pages have been showcasing the recent progress. The car has been completely stripped by our all-volunteer rescue team in Bellingham, Washington, under the direction of James Bell of the Bell Studebaker Museum. In final preparation for paint removal, James and his crew cleared out everything under the car-- the driveline, brake and fuel lines, exhaust, etc. so they wouldn’t be in the way of soda blasting the frame. The volunteer crew, who are all members of the Whatcom County chapter of the Studebaker Driver’s Club, have meticulously dismantled the car taking care to label and bag all parts. The rear end was swapped out with a temporary one and the refreshed rear-end, new leaf springs plus suspension from the A-arms out in front will be replaced once the car has returned for re-assembly.
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As we move into summer, Americans start polishing off the collector car and getting out the BBQ. I never put the two activities together other than they are both favorite summer pastimes, however they are both closely related thanks to Henry Ford. I found the start of this article in our archives which was submitted by museum volunteer John Austin , who is the former President of the Galloping Gertie Model A Ford Club of Tacoma Washington.
Model T’s Ford bodies are composed of a sheet metal skin over a wooden frame. Henry Ford produced over 15 million Model T’s over its 19-year run (1908-1927), and simultaneously produced vast quantities of wood waste.
E.G. Kingsford, a relative of Mr. Ford who owned a Ford dealership and also happened to be a real estate agent, engineered the purchase of over 313,000 acres of land on the Michigan Upper Peninsula upon which a sawmill and wooden auto parts plant were built in 1920. Soon after Ford, who was known as a notoriously frugal businessman, partnered with Kingsford and founded the Kingsford Company to reclaim saleable byproducts from the manufacturing waste. For every ton of scrap wood produced, this plant was able to extract 610 pounds of charcoal. This charcoal was manufactured into briquettes and sold under the name Ford Charcoal Briquettes. Now a ready source for outdoor cooking, this was the beginning of Americans cooking and barbecuing with charcoal.
Briquettes were re-named Kingsford Charcoal Briquettes (in honor of E.G.) a brand that still exists today. As a result of his entrepreneurial sense, Henry Ford is credited as forming the foundations of two industries both the automobile industry and the charcoal briquette industry.
I frequently receive calls asking for information on auto appraisers and whom we would recommend for them to contact. Appraising an automobile takes a professional who specializes in your particular era of vehicle. Therefore, it would be difficult for one to recommend an appraiser for all vehicles. I usually recommend contacting verified appraisal organizations, and requesting a list of appraisers in their area.
Always interview potential appraisers before you give one the job. Before you hire an appraiser, ask each of them:
Auto Appraisers Group (AAG), headquartered in Charlottesville, Virginia is one such source for locating an appraiser qualified to assess the value of your vehicle. They have a very informative website on how to select an appraiser.
International Society of Appraisers (ISA), headquartered in Chicago, Illinois is another source one can explore. The ISA appraiser lists are not limited to just automobiles; appraisers of collectibles, jewelry furniture and more can be found.
International Automotive Appraisers Association (IAAA), headquartered in Montvale, NJ boasts a membership of certified Professional Appraisers from the United States, Australia, Canada and Puerto Rico.
I had the pleasure last night to attend the Washington State Hot Rod Hall of Fame’s Annual awards banquet at the Tacoma Convention Center. For those of you who have not attended this event in the past, I would recommend making it next year: the 2011 banquet will be held at the Everett Holiday Inn in conjunction with the Cruizin' to Colby show.
In addition to a large and enthusiastic crowd (estimated to be over 600), there was a nice selection of raffle prizes and several new inductees were named, in addition to the 40+ past inductees who were honored:
Outstanding Young Hot Rodders:
- Andy Patton
- Nick Lampert
50 Year Club Awards:
- Beach Barons
- Pacific NW Region Porsche Club
- Pushrods of Hoquiam, Rakers
2010 Club of the Year:
- Seattle Rod-Tiques
- Don Amundson
- Larry Berkovich
- Jon Byers
- Russ Divers
- Mike Mooney
- Henry Nelson
$7,000 was raised for the favorite charity of the group, The Burned Children Recovery Foundation, and an announcement was made about the reforming of the Northwest Car Club Council. The Council was originally formed about 50 years ago to help legitimize the car clubs of the era and the stated mission today is to advocate the hobby to the many young people who will become the future of the hobby.
MC Lance Lambert did an outstanding job of both keeping the event going, and having some fun along the way!
The cars live again! Vehicles that have been released for sale by the Collection committee have been going to good homes and we are receiving regular updates from many of the new owners with regard to their restoration efforts of vehicles purchased from the museum.
Recently, for example, the collection committee released for sale a 1956 Studebaker Goldenhawk which had turned out to actually be made from parts of two Goldenhawk years, 1956 and 1957. The front end, frame and interior was the 1956, the rear fins, trunk lid, doors, dash and engine was from a 1957.
This car turned out to be quite controversial among Studebaker purists, but new owners felt the car had merit. The car was purchased by Jim and Stephanie Bell from Bellingham, Washington for the Bell Studebaker Museum. The Bells have started a museum full of rare or unusual Studes, currently housing 75 Studebakers, going as far back to the days when Studebaker was a premier maker of wagons. The Bells were thrilled to be able to add this car to their stable. Jim has all the parts to get the car running again, which will include re-fitting the engine with the missing supercharger, putting back the stock transmission, and some of the missing trim, finishing the interior, and driving it every day he can!
Jim and Stephanie spoke fondly of Harold LeMay and mentioned two cars Harold had acquired from them in the past, and are thrilled to add this specialty custom to their collection.
Our selling account on eBay lists donated parts, car donations as well as cars released by the Board of Director's Collection Committee. To find our listings, go here. Those with eBay accounts can save us as a “favorite seller” to receive email notifications of new listings directly from eBay.
The sights and sounds of a foreign country - even a familiar one - often jog our senses and transport us to another time. Coming from a land of SUV's and bland sedans that all seem to look alike, I'm always thrilled to see the kinds of vehicles embraced by our cousins "over the pond". What I love the most is seeing those wacky London taxis and the wild and wonderful Bristol double-decker buses - it's like seeing some long-extinct pterodactyl flying past!
Apparently, Harold LeMay must have felt the same way. Over the years, he managed to find and buy not one, not two, but three of the darn things. One of these fascinating machines was donated to America's Car Museum by the LeMay family and we are very proud to have it. So proud, in fact, that we elected to include it in our pool of vehicles for our Adopt-an-Auto program. The list includes all levels of vehicles we want to restore and allows people to donate the badly-needed funds to help us get them Museum-ready.
We added this great example of UK ingenuity to our list and within days, John Lyons, one of our newest Steering Committee members, scooped it up. John knew full well that he will be the proud "parent" of this bus for 5 years and will get to come to the Museum when it's done for a fun family photo shoot. In the meantime, we will display the Bristol at our new place in Fife - and allow the millions of people a year who drive past us on I-5 a short glimpse into the past and into the fun world of British transportation.
Cup of tea, anyone?