Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Wheels of Time Museum

Isn't technology a wonderful thing? We got a satellite dish a couple of years ago and I've been using my DVR ever since. For the past few weeks, we've had a "trial" subscription to the SPEED channel. I've been recording several shows, but one of my favorites is "My Classic Car" with Dennis Gage. I've actually seen Dennis at a couple of car shows in my day. I think the last time was during the James Dean Festival in Fairmount, Indiana.

At any rate, I watched an episode today in which Dennis toured a fairly new museum in Maggie Valley, NC. The name of the museum is "Wheels of Time" and it contains a collection of rare and vintage motorcycles and automobiles. The cool thing about the museum is that it is a "running museum", meaning everything in the place is in operational order. The guy who owns it also tears down and restores cars right in the museum. While Dennis Gage was there, he had a Duesenberg's engine dissassembled. He said it is a great educational tool to show people how these old cars work.

One of the cars that he took Dennis a ride in was what may be the 1st "hotrod". This car was built by Cletus Clobes. I was so interested in the car and the museum, that I got online and found the website for the museum. I've included a link and also the information I found out about the "Clobes". (Old Cletus does look to happy to be reunited with his car in 1989 does he?!)

(Taken from the Wheels of Time website: http://www.wheelsthroughtime.com/)

"As far as the world knows, the Clobes Special is the world’s first street rod. The car has a unique history and I sure wish it could talk. The builder of the car, Cletus Clobes, was a multi-talented person. He built his own home; he built his own motorcycle; and he built this car. It has many advanced features including: a dropped and filled axle, a z’ed frame, an adjustable chassis, split hood with locks, concealed radiator cap and gas cap, battery and horn under hood, telescoping mirror, rain gutters, steering column mounted, motometer and on and on and on. The car was purchased in 1989 out of the home where Cletus lived. It was parked there for over 40 years. The World War II gas ration stickers are still pasted inside on the windshield. The car was sold at a walk-through-the-house sale for $800.00. It changed one hand and came into the possession of Bill Anderson of Hudson, Illinois. Bill called me and said "You've gotta have this car”, and I obliged. The car is in good running order and I’ve used it occasionally, including one trip to Mt. Pulaski, where the car was reunited with old Cletus, as pictured. Cletus was a man of many talents in his younger years. He is known in the music circle’s as a band drummer. Cletus played with Tiny Hill and many other Big Band's."
We take a trip to Charleston, SC every summer, and this year my parents are planning to go too. If I can't talk my wife into swinging by Maggie Valley, NC on the way home, maybe my dad and mom can check the place out. At any rate...someone needs to get some pictures for the blog...right?