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Heaman's Antique Autorama...In Canada


jeff_a
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Has anyone ever heard of this private antique auto collection? I was researching the area around Pembina, ND for something else and read about Heaman's Antique Autorama. I've been to Canada four times, but had never heard of it. It was started by William Heaman near Carman, Manitoba, about 60 miles SW of Winnipeg, Canada.

 

The collection hasn't been open to the public on a regular basis for 10 years or so, but they have some interesting cars. On May 28th, there was a fundraiser there for a community project and various articles suggest they may have the following: 

  • 1933 Rockne
  • 1931 Pontiac
  • 1928 Chandler
  • 1926 Erskine
  • 1926 Brooks (steam)
  • 1915 Packard
  • 1914 Saxon
  • Gray-Dort
  • King
  • Elgin
  • Kissel Kar
  • Pope-Hartford
  • 1910 Case
  • 1910 REO
  • 1906 Autocar

Geordie Heaman is an 82-year-old retired farmer and his dad William began collecting antiques in 1914. He was showing a reporter around these wonderful treasures in one of the articles I read and recounted that both Clark Gable and the Duke of Edinburgh have ridden in the black 1915 Packard, when the previous owner had it. Another remark was that this is the only 1910 Case in existence. This is a partial list of cars. Regrettably, I've never been there, so am sorry I missed the $10-a-plate pancake breakfast this spring when the public was invited. Maybe some of you reading this are familiar with the area and the cars.

 

----Jeff Brown

 

 

Image by Gordon Goldsborough and the Manitoba Historical Society, 2010. At that time tours were by appointment only.

heamensautorama1.jpg

Edited by jeff_a (see edit history)
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I've been through the collection 3 times over the last 30 years. Viewing is still by appointment only, the last time I was there it was open to a local antique cruise. I have a few pics if you are really interested, including the Brooks steam car. The restorations aren't really what you would call museum quality... a few are just good condition survivors, and the facility is just an unheated shed so winter wouldn't be the best time to go. He does have some very unique pieces there though.

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I have been through there once when the coast-to-coast tour came through.  I have a rural property about 20 km east of there and drive by the building regularly.  I had attempted to arrange a tour through there once when I had some Buick Club of America Gopher State Chapter members up for a tour, but Geordie wasn't available that weekend, so we couldn't get in.

 

While not necessarily museum quality, it is quite a collection of unique automobiles.  I do have photos somewhere, but would need to dig through a few computers to find them.

 

If you are ever in the vicinity and interested, there is the Manitoba Antique Auto Museum in Elkhorn, near the Saskatchewan border - http://mbautomuseum.com/   It is similar in that it isn't what you would consider museum quality, but has a reasonably sized collection with some interesting, unique pieces.  I think it is one of, if not the, largest collctions of McLaughlin automobiles (later McLaughlin-Buick, then GM of Canada).

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Thanks for commenting whtbaron and Thriller. Maybe I'll make it there someday, despite the 1,040-mile distance. I was surprised to see there is a 1926 Brooks Steam car. For some reason I thought it was a turn-of-the-century company. Looking it up, I read that they only sold cars in the 1923-1931 timeframe. I've heard about the museum in Elkhorn, which also sounds worthwhile.

Edited by jeff_a (see edit history)
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Guest AlCapone

Being from Canada I am well aware of this collection. The aforementioned descriptions are indeed accurate. If in the area well worth attending but not in my opinion worth a 1000 mile trip. Nice but not spectacular ! Wayne

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