Monday, March 9, 2009

Rust in Peace Car Cemetary Revisited!

As promised here is the first update to my recent post about the incredible repository of antique cars and equipment we discovered a few weeks ago. Of course you and I both knew that we were not going to be able to stay away for long, especially since I had only been able to take photos of a few of the countless cars hidden away there. We finally had a few warmer days recently and consequently felt some familiar stirrings commonly called spring fever, which inevitably resulted in the shelving of more menial though necessary chores, to succumb to the lure of discovering the hood ornament to end all hood ornaments or taking the most awesome antique car photo ever!

We found the place much as we had left it and after exchanging some pleasantries with the owner of the premises, we wasted no more time and headed off into a section we had not explored fully during our last visit. Not that we will have the slightest chance to find all the treasures hidden here this time around! There are so many corners just waiting to be explored, but with diligence eventually we will have seen everything. So, without further ado, please enjoy the photos of our latest discoveries!

The first image is of course another hood ornament, this one of a lovely flying lady which looks like she is about to lift off the crusty hood of this old De Soto.

When I came upon this vehicle my heart nearly stopped, you are looking at late 1917 to 1923 REO, I am not sure exactly which date is correct! It looks rather bedraggled at this point, it's tires are in shreds and it's wheels look rather knock kneed. The chassis behind does not look any better, in fact it is non existent except for the rust encrusted metal supports, the axles and wheel assembly. Below is a picture of the great REO emblem which is still mounted on the front, though it too has seen much better days.

I thought it might be nice to show what is left of the REO armature and the stick shift and gear assembly. Back then they actually used real wood nicely stained and polished to a high gloss, of which only some of very weathered wood is left today. They actually marked the foot pedals so there would be no confusion which was the clutch and which was the brake!

I had to chuckle when I came upon this beauty, a 1954 Buick Century Riviera. Anyone interested in making an offer? This Buick is solidly built, all it takes is new tires, new seats and a paint job. Well, there maybe a few minor adjustments which I haven't mentioned yet. But it will make the old girl's frown turn into a smile guaranteed - and the new owner will be very happy too! They don't make cars like this anymore you know! I think I missed my calling, maybe I should have given car sales a try, eh? Just kidding of course, but if I heard right, the owner is willing to consider any fair offer for any of these vehicles or parts.

Now this is what I call a politically incorrect name for this 1940s truck! But I was told that back in the day there actually was a truck manufacturer named White and I guess he wanted to declare the vehicle's superior might to future owners. I don't know if they sold many of these trucks, but this is the only example I have ever seen.

Wouldn't you love to have a wild paint job just like this for your late 1940s Pontiac? It almost looks glamorous thanks to the help of Photoshop - it's magic makes the ravages of time look almost like an abstract work of art.

I have a great love for these old hood ornaments and I was really looking forward to finding something really special on this trip. When I found this glowing flying lady mounted on a nearly completely rusted 1942 De Soto I was ecstatic! The sun even obliged me and peeked out from behind clouds just to illuminate her properly! Isn't she grand? She is the same lady as the chrome version in the first photo. The Lucite makes her look so ephemeral, but she must have glowed brilliantly at night when she was illuminated!

This wheel with real wooden spokes, which most likely belonged to a Model A or T, is the best preserved part of the entire vehicle, believe it or not. A small tree and a few bushes and even a rosebush have made their home here and have totally intertwined with what is left of the struts and framework of this car. It must have sat here for quite some time!

I have no idea what car this ornament is mounted onto. I have tried to keep a record of the names of the vehicles, but somehow I missed this one! I will have to add it later - a good excuse to pay another visit!

I think this is the most lovely and well preserved vehicle I have discovered so far, I am sure you will agree! I love the turquoise color contrasted by the black wheels and bottom. I think this has been restored at some point and it would not take much to get it into top shape - lovely!

In complete contrast to the above vehicle is this old rusty Nash which is now totally overgrown with weeds, it has lost all of it's windows and grille and has sunken deeply into the ground over the years. But what it has lost in glamor and shiny elegance, it has made up for with character, just look at it!
Another former beauty queen that has sunken into the ground. This 1942 De Soto with the abstract paint job is the vehicle which sports the lovely Lucite hood ornament I showed previously. But despite it's deplorable condition it still looks formidable and solid!

I think this lovely swan hood ornament was on an old Packard if I am not mistaken. It is in great condition and looks so very graceful with it's raised wings and arched neck!

Another De Soto flying lady, this one is of a simpler design but no less striking than those in the previous photos.

In 1947 Pontiac designed and built this massive vehicle with the enormous grille and the predator teeth exposed from the bumper. I think time's ravages artistic and very colorful paint job only enhances the powerful impact of this long abandoned car.

What can I say about this 1937 Plymouth, but that it still has much to tell us about it's glory days as an American icon! Never mind the rust and blind windshield - I would like to see any of the current cars after all the abuse this one has surely suffered at the hands of it's many owners and particularly the elements - on second thought, never mind...

I named this photo "Home, Sweet Home" in honor of the many spiders and other small critters who decided to make this their home. When I approached to take this picture I just saw a small tail disappear below the seats - I had no wish to frighten the little critter so I quietly walked away afterward.

I really like this Dodge hood ornament of a nicely detailed ram. It looks like it was on a fairly recent make of a Dodge truck, but I have no recollection of ever having seen it mounted before.

Many of the windows and bodies of these old cars have interesting designs created by the elements or other destructive forces. This one caught my eye as well, even though I have no idea what might have caused this effect on the rear window of a car whose make I no longer remember. With the yellow discoloration on the bottom it almost gives the impression of fire, doesn't it?

Here is another completely rusted out and overgrown old truck returning back to the elements! From the looks of it, it won't take too much longer! You can barely make out it's outline!

There are many more treasures waiting to be discovered so I want to invite you to please come back to see the latest developments! I know I want to go back there to explore some more and also because I really want to see what the place looks like when everything is lush and green, besides the fact that I would really like to learn more about some of these grand old cars!

See you then...


Diatton said...

I really liked the photos with the damaged cars...

sher said...

love that you focused on the hood ornaments and other details... like the WHITE label. Thats too funny.

Frankphoto said...

very nice work, you should sell these!