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British Columbia pre-war cars that have survived


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Fernwood ESSO (2320 Fernwood Road) in Victoria was owned by Eric Foster..I stopped in there recently to confirm this with Robb Warren who owns the station now. Mr. Warren said that the station was a racing hub in the thirties and forties...he went to say that a man in his late eighties had dropped in the shop sometime in the early 2000's and handed him some photos that he had taken as a teenager working there.

He stated that Eric was always working on race cars of one sort or another...occasionally there would be visitors from the U.S. that would bring their cars up and Eric would set up a race. They would all drive across open fields down to a dirt track oval near willows beach...hard to imagine because there are no open fields between Fernwood and Willows today!

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On 9/26/2020 at 9:18 PM, PFindlay said:

Our local Napier expert is Steve Diggins, who sent these pictures of Paul's Napier in its early days.  Steve says:

 

Hi Peter, here are a couple of photos of Dr. Boyce's Napier in Kelowna. This is the one Paul Bolam restored. The first photo shows Dr. Boyce, his wife and the nurse with the car. The second photo shows the car in what I am sure is a May Day Parade [centre car].

Steve

 

Dr. B. F. Boyce of Barnard St. in Kelowna had registration number 4173 .  He renewed it through 1916 and then the registration stops.  Perhaps the car had been in an accident or was taken out of the province.  However, it seems to have ended up in Vancouver by the 1960s.

 

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Steve Diggins has provided a little more info about Paul's Napiers.  He says that Dr. Boyce's car was the smaller of the two, a 30 hp.  The car in Ken's picture earlier was the bigger one, a 1912 T-48 45 hp.  Both cars are in the UK now.  Steve has received the following from the owner of "Dr. Boyce's car":

 

Yes, I do now own the smaller of the two, a 30hp.  It is car number 7389 and is a T43 produced in 1912.  It was originally owned by a Dr Boyce in Kelowna, then a Mr J Burne.  It was dismantled in the 1930's and stored on a farm in Kelowna before Paul put the collection of parts back together.  As I think you are aware, there are a couple of photos from when Dr Boyce owned the car.  It then passed through the hands of J Balmford and Chris Cooper here in the U.K. from whom we bought it around 6 years ago. [Below] is how the car now looks.

 

I have not researched the early history of the 45hp but according to my records it is a T48, also from 1912, and car number 11018.   I have photos from 2000 when it came to a centenary rally I organised at Brooklands but would have to consult my files to find those.

 

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7 hours ago, PFindlay said:

 

Steve Diggins has provided a little more info about Paul's Napiers.  He says that Dr. Boyce's car was the smaller of the two, a 30 hp.  The car in Ken's picture earlier was the bigger one, a 1912 T-48 45 hp.  Both cars are in the UK now.  Steve has received the following from the owner of "Dr. Boyce's car":

 

Yes, I do now own the smaller of the two, a 30hp.  It is car number 7389 and is a T43 produced in 1912.  It was originally owned by a Dr Boyce in Kelowna, then a Mr J Burne.  It was dismantled in the 1930's and stored on a farm in Kelowna before Paul put the collection of parts back together.  As I think you are aware, there are a couple of photos from when Dr Boyce owned the car.  It then passed through the hands of J Balmford and Chris Cooper here in the U.K. from whom we bought it around 6 years ago. [Below] is how the car now looks.

 

I have not researched the early history of the 45hp but according to my records it is a T48, also from 1912, and car number 11018.   I have photos from 2000 when it came to a centenary rally I organised at Brooklands but would have to consult my files to find those.

 

 

I wonder if the BMHIT in England has the count of how may Napiers were sold new in Canada, if not all of North America.  The Dominion Automobile Co. was the Toronto dealer for the 'Noiseless Napier' according the 1911 Auto Show section here-------->  https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=hqOjcs7Dif8C&dat=19110226&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

 

Many erroneously think imports of British cars to North America didn't start until after the second world war with the U.K. government's 'Export of Die' mandate in order to pay down their World War II deficit.

 

Craig

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2 hours ago, 8E45E said:

I wonder if the BMHIT in England has the count of how may Napiers were sold new in Canada, if not all of North America.  The Dominion Automobile Co. was the Toronto dealer for the 'Noiseless Napier' according the 1911 Auto Show section here-------->  https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=hqOjcs7Dif8C&dat=19110226&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

 

Many erroneously think imports of British cars to North America didn't start until after the second world war with the U.K. government's 'Export of Die' mandate in order to pay down their World War II deficit.

 

Craig

This is true.  Due to Commonwealth Preference, British cars were certainly available in Canada between the wars and there would have been some prior to WW1.  My father bought a new 1946 Austin 10 on June 21, 1947 from British Industries Limited in Edmonton.  The company was headquartered in Calgary and as well as Edmonton had offices in Winnipeg, Regina and Vancouver.  There were associate offices in Toronto, Montreal and interestingly, New York City.  It is reasonable to assume that they were in business prior to WW2.  

Fred Deeley started selling Austins in Vancouver in the early 30's.  There were also dealers for Hillman, Morris and Standard.  I can recall a very nicely kept 1938 or 39 Standard Flying 9 still in daily use in North Vancouver about 1960.  (PS My father paid $1500 plus $35 in taxes for that Austin.  Two weeks later, on July 7, we were in Vancouver, having driven from Edmonton, through Calgary and over the Crowsnest Pass.)

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3 hours ago, dictator27 said:

Due to Commonwealth Preference, British cars were certainly available in Canada between the wars and there would have been some prior to WW1.

After the second world war, that was very apparent with General Motors marketing of their captive imports between Canada and the United States from the end of the war to the early 1970's.

 

In the US, the German Opel line was sold at Buick dealers in the US.  The only Vauxhall the US ever officially receive was the Victor line from 1958 to 1961 or '62 which I believe was sold through Pontiac dealers.  (The Opel factory was in what was known as the "U.S Zone" in Germany at the time.)

 

In Canada, nearly all the Vauxhall range was sold in Canada from 1947 through 1972 at Pontiac-Buick agencies, and even badged engineered versions of the Viva and Victor as 'Envoy Epic' and 'Envoy' from 1960 through 1969 for Chevrolet-Oldsmobile dealers to sell.  The only Opels Canada officially got, not counting the much later Saturn-based cars from the 2000's was the 1900GT in the early '70's.

 

Craig

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On 9/24/2020 at 8:38 PM, 8E45E said:

Okay, who was the early Postwar Tatra and Skoda collector in Vancouver?  I heard he had a silver Tatraplan 600 and a black one.  My dad took a photo of the silver car when it was in Stanley Park in 1973.

 

Craig

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I have pics of both of those Tatras- the silver one and the black one from a car show in Ladner in 2005.

 

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4 hours ago, 8E45E said:

In Canada, nearly all the Vauxhall range was sold in Canada from 1947 through 1972 at Pontiac-Buick agencies, and even badged engineered versions of the Viva and Victor as 'Envoy Epic' and 'Envoy' from 1960 through 1969 for Chevrolet-Oldsmobile dealers to sell.  The only Opels Canada officially got, not counting the much later Saturn-based cars from the 2000's was the 1900GT in the early '70's.

 

Craig

 

When I started  University (U of Waterloo) in 1972, I  bought my first car, it was a 1969 Vauxhall Viva, unfortunately it did not turn out to be too reliable as it went timing chain failures three times in the two years that I owned it.

BTW it was the only used car that I ever bought until I purchased my 37 Packard a few years ago.

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14 hours ago, Gangster said:

 

When I started  University (U of Waterloo) in 1972, I  bought my first car, it was a 1969 Vauxhall Viva, unfortunately it did not turn out to be too reliable as it went timing chain failures three times in the two years that I owned it.

The 1971/2 Vauxhall Firenza had an even worse reputation.  There was a Dissatisfied Firenza Onwers' lobby group that actually got GM to issue a $1000 credit to owners of these cars to trade them in.  That more or less spelled the end of Vauxhall in Canada; not to mention, GM's first 'world car', the T-body Chevette started production in Brazil in 1974, and by 1976, was being produced in both North America and England.

 

Craig

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42 minutes ago, 8E45E said:

The 1971/2 Vauxhall Firenza had an even worse reputation.  There was a Dissatisfied Firenza Onwers' lobby group that actually got GM to issue a $1000 credit to owners of these cars to trade them in.  That more or less spelled the end of Vauxhall in Canada; not to mention, GM's first 'world car', the T-body Chevette started production in Brazil in 1974, and by 1976, was being produced in both North America and England.

 

Craig

This is interesting no doubt, but it is getting off the topic of Pre-war cars that have survived.

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Peter Trant sent me this picture of Jim Leir's 1918 Mack.   Jim's father, Hugh, was a Penticton pioneer and sawmill owner, employing 100 workers in those early days.   He bought the truck shortly after returning from WW1 and used it for the Leir Lumber Co., later the  Penticton Sawmills Ltd.  It was military surplus at the time. 

 

Jim restored the truck and eventually sold it to a friend, then donated the proceeds to a local hospital.  Sadly, we lost him last year.  Here is an article about Jim and the truck:

https://www.castanet.net/news/Penticton/166114/Rare-truck-sold-for-hospital

 

There's a good article about Hugh Leir at this link

http://www.pentictonherald.ca/news/article_6e48ca0a-757f-11e7-9a1d-bb393e3efdcb.html

 

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This is a Leir Lumber truck, but it's not the Mack.

 

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The restored truck - maybe looks better than new.

Edited by PFindlay
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31 minutes ago, PFindlay said:

Peter Trant sent me this picture of Jim Leir's 1918 Mack.  

 

The restored truck - maybe looks better than new.

Thanks for the links to the articles.  That is the Mack I posted a photo of on Page 4.

 

Craig

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This is is the Spirit of Tomorrow, built in Victoria BC in the early 40s by Barney Oldfield.  His wind tunnel was a creek behind his shop where he whittled a wood block into the shape he desired and held it in the current of the river noting the drag on a spring scale and how the water flowed around it.  When he settled on a shape he extrapolated the dimensions full scale and hand crafted the aluminum body.  Powered by a rear engine Ford V8.  The car is still in the original family’s care and the shop on West Saanich Rd where it was designed and built still stands.

 

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7 hours ago, Modeleh said:

This is is the Spirit of Tomorrow, built in Victoria BC in the early 40s by Barney Oldfield.  His wind tunnel was a creek behind his shop where he whittled a wood block into the shape he desired and held it in the current of the river noting the drag on a spring scale and how the water flowed around it.  When he settled on a shape he extrapolated the dimensions full scale and hand crafted the aluminum body.  Powered by a rear engine Ford V8.  The car is still in the original family’s care and the shop on West Saanich Rd where it was designed and built still stands.

 

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That's really interesting.  I had no idea something like that came out of Victoria.

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14 hours ago, Modeleh said:

This is is the Spirit of Tomorrow, built in Victoria BC in the early 40s by Barney Oldfield.  His wind tunnel was a creek behind his shop where he whittled a wood block into the shape he desired and held it in the current of the river noting the drag on a spring scale and how the water flowed around it.  When he settled on a shape he extrapolated the dimensions full scale and hand crafted the aluminum body.  Powered by a rear engine Ford V8.  The car is still in the original family’s care and the shop on West Saanich Rd where it was designed and built still stands.

 

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I saw it in the parking lot of the Abbotsford Air Show in the early 1970's.  It looked like nothing I had ever seen before. For a long time I thought it was a Stout Scarab which is  similar  in general appearance.  One of the nicest owner built cars  of the era out there in my opinion.

There must be thousands of hours of time invested in its creation.

 

Greg

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7 hours ago, PFindlay said:

That's really interesting.  I had no idea something like that came out of Victoria.

It’s on the cusp of fitting into the prewar category of this great thread you started but it’s such a gem I had to share it.

The chassis was completed in 1940 and remarkably it was all done during wartime years.  It originally had a flathead but was upgraded to a 289 and a new paint scheme from the original white and blue in the 60s. 

People often remark that it looks like a Volkswagen, which I don’t agree with but I suppose there is some resemblance.  This predates the arrival of the first VW in Canada by more than a decade.  It must have really been something to see back in the day.  Today, it turns heads more than anything else I’ve ever rode in and it’s as smooth and quiet as a new car.  The build quality is really top notch.

Amazing that several guys worldwide were all working on similar concepts at the same time unbeknownst to each other, Tatra and VW Porsche in Europe and this clever young guy from Saanich BC.

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Also from Peter Trant ... His 1933 Mclaughlin Buick 80 Series Victoria Sedan.   Peter found this car in Burnaby in 1967 and he believes it is a local car.  It is also a very rare car, as there are no other known examples of this model and body style.   On the floorboards Peter found a stencilled label "Not for production", leading Peter to speculate that it may have been a prototype model.

 

Peter did some work on this car back in the 60s, but it was many years before he really tackled the job head on.  He finally finished it in 2013 and it is absolutely stunning.  Peter and Paul Carter did all the work (everything!) and there is a detailed article on the restoration process in the VCCC's Vintage Car magazine of Feb/Mar 2019.

 

The pictures below span about 40 years of Peter's work.

 

 

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Edited by PFindlay (see edit history)
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A few more photos of Oldfield's creation..

Barney lived in a round house that was mounted in such a way that it could be rotated without disturbing the plumbing and electrical...if he got tired of the view he just rotated the house.

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This 1922 Wills Sainte Claire was originally sold in California.  Somehow, it made its way to Victoria where Tommy Seward purchased it in 1933.  That same year Tommy received the contract to deliver mail around southern Vancouver Island.  He ran that route until 1948 with various trucks, sometimes using the Wills as his backup vehicle.  The Wills was the family's only car during these years.

 

In 1948 the family moved to a new house in Colwood and Tommy was working in logging.  The Wills Sainte Claire was parked in the garage and remained there for 40 years.  Eventually, it was passed on to Tommy's son, who  began a long and careful restoration of it.  It was completed in 2016 and the car was shown at the Crescent Beach Concours that year.

 

Here is a link to an article from 2016:
https://driving.ca/auto-news/news/collector-classics-1922-wills-sainte-claire-roadster
 

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1937 -Note the headlights

 

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1942, the car is almost 20 years old at this point but still good for a fun ride.

 

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The overhead cam V8 engine is a beauty.

 

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The wartime ration stickers have been preserved.

 

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In 1911, Charles Doering of Vancouver married Mary Jackson of Cowichan, owner of Fairburn Farm.  On their honeymoon they travelled to San Francisco where they picked up a 1912 S.G.V. and reportedly drove it back to Vancouver Island.  Mrs. Doering used the car regularly until 1923.  It had B.C. plate number 1877.  

 

Charles Doering was president of Vancouver Breweries on East 7th Ave.  He also had a Cadillac (plate #2911) and registered both cars at the brewery's Vancouver address.  However, within a few years the S.G.V. was registered in Duncan and by 1916 the Cadillac was registered in Hat Creek (Ashcroft), still in Doering's name.

 

The S.G.V. was parked in Mrs. Doering's barn in 1923 and stayed there until she died in 1948.  At that point it ended up at Fleming's Auto Wrecking on Lake Cowichan Road.  Fortunately, Cliff Scroggie found the car there and saved it.  He kept it for the rest of his life.  In 2006 Cliff and Paul Bolam got it running and it is still in the family, awaiting further restoration.

 

S.G.V. cars were made in Reading, PA, by the ACME company.  They were an interesting car with an engine inspired by the Italian Lancia cars.  They had a pressurized oil system and a four speed transmission.

 

To read the story of Cliff's acquisition of this car and more, check out this link:
http://antique.vccc.com/pioneers/sgv/sgvcontents.html

 

 

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I started this thread partly because we were wondering "are there any still out there?"   Well, here are a couple that surfaced last week.  I don't know if they have always been Vancouver cars, but I know they've been here for at least 50 years.  Maybe someone knows more about them.

 

This 1931 Chrysler sedan and 1940 Oldsmobile convertible coupe were part of the estate of Al Wold of Vancouver.  Both cars are the 6 cylinder model.  Al was a local saxophone player who taught jazz at the university level and played with numerous bands including the Dal Richards Big Band.  He also liked to own and work on cars.

 

It is known that Al had the Chrysler in the 1970s, when he applied for a vintage plate for it.  He had the Olds in the 1983 VCCC Easter Parade and it has a 1974 Vancouver City Test sticker on it, so it was in regular use in the 70s.  Both cars have been sitting for many years but are very solid and have had some work done on them.  The Chrysler has almost new upholstery and the Olds must have had new tires when it was parked.  The Olds has a first year Hydramatic transmission.

 

So, if either of these cars rings a bell with you, please let me know.  Maybe we can piece together a little more of their history.

 

 

1931 Chrysler.jpg

 

 

1940 Oldsmobile 2.jpg

Edited by PFindlay (see edit history)
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On 10/5/2020 at 11:25 AM, PFindlay said:

In 1911, Charles Doering of Vancouver married Mary Jackson of Cowichan, owner of Fairburn Farm.  On their honeymoon they travelled to San Francisco where they picked up a 1912 S.G.V. and reportedly drove it back to Vancouver Island.  Mrs. Doering used the car regularly until 1923.  It had B.C. plate number 1877.  

 

Charles Doering was president of Vancouver Breweries on East 7th Ave.  He also had a Cadillac (plate #2911) and registered both cars at the brewery's Vancouver address.  However, within a few years the S.G.V. was registered in Duncan and by 1916 the Cadillac was registered in Hat Creek (Ashcroft), still in Doering's name.

 

The S.G.V. was parked in Mrs. Doering's barn in 1923 and stayed there until she died in 1948.  At that point it ended up at Fleming's Auto Wrecking on Lake Cowichan Road.  Fortunately, Cliff Scroggie found the car there and saved it.  He kept it for the rest of his life.  In 2006 Cliff and Paul Bolam got it running and it is still in the family, awaiting further restoration.

 

S.G.V. cars were made in Reading, PA, by the ACME company.  They were an interesting car with an engine inspired by the Italian Lancia cars.  They had a pressurized oil system and a four speed transmission.

 

To read the story of Cliff's acquisition of this car and more, check out this link:
http://antique.vccc.com/pioneers/sgv/sgvcontents.html

 

 

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I am absolutely LOVING that Studebaker tow vehicle!

 

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7 hours ago, Fargoguy said:

I am absolutely LOVING that Studebaker tow vehicle!

 

Yes, I don't think Cliff ever told me what happened to that car.  They probably ran it into the ground towing cars over the Malahat and then just got rid of it.  After all, it was just a 20+ year old car at the time.

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When Cliff Scroggie bought the S.G.V. at Fleming Auto Wreckers in 1948 he also picked up this 1910 Cadillac.   It sat with the S.G.V. until Cliff's death about 60 years later.   Included here is a picture taken when the car was in use showing that it had small wheels and aftermarket front doors added.   Does anyone recognize  the service station name?  Apparently the doors had been removed at the wrecking yard.

 

A few years ago, I made a connection with a fellow who knew the car from back in the 1940s.  He recalled going joyriding in it along with some teenaged buddies.  I took him out to see it and take a few pictures.  The last photo below shows him sitting in the Cadillac.  This car is still around and awaiting restoration.

 

And yes ... there's that Studebaker again!

 

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More on the 1910 Cadillac ...  It's coming back now to me now.  I found an article in the Times Colonist (Jan. 3 2014) in which people were invited to recall their favourite car.  This picture was at the top of the article and I recognized it as Cliff's car by the front doors.  A woman had written in to tell the story her late husband used to tell.  The fellow I connected with was one of the characters in the story.  Here's what the woman wrote:

 

In his [her husband's] words: “About 1942, my friend Roger and I bought a 1910 Cadillac from an elderly gentleman who was willing to sell it for $10 as long as he could keep the windshield. Initially he allowed us to store it on his property but the neighbours were not too happy about the noise we made “tinkering” with it, and with great difficulty we moved it to my home adjacent to St. Peter’s Anglican Church in Duncan.  The tires were no good so we scrounged oddball-sized, worn-out tires and cut the beads (edges of the tires) until we could stretch them onto the rims and secure them with wire.

It still wasn’t road-worthy and my mother admonished us not to take it out of the yard. Her long driveway and a short distance on the public road to St. Peter’s driveway was too much to resist for us young bucks who needed to have their youthful driving urges met.

One day I was driving this route. Clanging and banging up to the church, I rounded a corner only to find a funeral procession making its way to the cemetery. There was no place to turn around, so I cut a corner close to the only tree and bounced off it, with one of my buddies collapsing to the floor when he spotted his father as one of the pallbearers. I managed to keep going, much to the amusement of the mourners. I couldn’t believe that no one ever told my mother of this escapade.

Our pleasure soon came to an end when we went to run the Caddy and found someone had stolen the carburetor. We couldn’t find a replacement, so sold the brass driving lights for $20 and the car ‘as is’ for $20. Later we learned the purchaser found and bought a carburetor — ours that had been stolen!”

1910 Cadillac Times-Colonist.jpg

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Mike Reid's 1911 Cadillac was sold in Victoria to Mr. John Hart of Gillespie & Hart Real Estate.  Hart lived at 1148 Hilda St. and the car had plate number 2915.  Apparently the car was ordered fully loaded with everything Cadillac had to offer.   In 1916 Hart went into B.C. politics and was finance minister for many years.  He was Premier of the province from 1941 to 1947 and the Hart Highway in Northern B.C. was named after him. 

 

It's not known what happened to the car after Hart owned it, but it ended up in Albany, Oregon, in the 1980s and was given a cosmetic restoration at that time.  Mike and his father (John Reid) bought the car in 1990 and made the car tour ready.  John and Barbara used it on many tours in the 90s.  When John died, the car was sold to Fred Tremblay.  Fred liked his cars to run perfectly, so he had the engine rebuilt including new rods (a Cadillac weakness) and all balanced perfectly.  This car runs as good as it looks.  

 

Upon Fred's death it went to Orest Kitzul and continued as a regular on HCCA tours.  When Orest turned 80 in 2014, he called Mike and said he was ready to sell the car.  And so it was that Mike ended up with the car that he and his dad had owned 20 years previously.   Mike tours it regularly and it's still a great runner.

 

 

966201381_1911Cadillac(1991).jpg.f3f6d8f4cfb601a3225482222e63a2ea.jpg

                                                          John and Barb Reid on tour in 1991

 

 

1830617604_1911Cadillac(2014).JPG.4146d2af9e5628bd8e51fc8f33991a3a.JPG

                                                  Orest and Carole Kitzul on tour in 2014

 

1385217120_1911Cadillac.thumb.jpg.5b888fc9af7bcb76650bd99bd09d9158.jpg

Mike and Mary Reid on tour in 2017.  (Did you know that HCCA board members get their own security detail?)

 

 

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This is Dave Proctor's 1927 Studebaker Big Six.  He's had it for over 60 years and has put over 100,000 miles on it.

 

Back in the 1950s Dave became aware that this car was sitting at Jamieson's car lot in Victoria.  One day Dave and his brother took a job with a Campbell River dealer to deliver a Hillman down island to Victoria.  Once there, they checked out the Studebaker.  It had belonged to a painter and was pretty run down.  The salesman gave them a cautious assurance that it would probably make it, so they settled on something like $150 and headed north.

 

The car ran pretty well - on 4 cylinders.  Going over the Malahat there were regular stops where Dave's brother would jump out and stick a rock behind the wheel so that Dave could fiddle with something under the hood.  Eventually they made it home where friends and family were rather unimpressed.  Dave discovered that it had 2 broken valve lifters so he learned how to silver solder and repaired them to get it running on 6 cylinders.  That repair job is still holding 60 years later!

 

Dave has driven the Big Six to countless events over the years.   These include driving friends Don and Donna to their wedding, their 25th anniversary, and their 50th anniversary.  He also drove it to his own 90th birthday party.  We should all take a lesson from him.

 

There is an excellent article by Neil Lewis about Dave and his Studebaker in the VCCC's Vintage Car magazine of Dec 2018 / Jan 2019.

 

1927 Studebaker.jpg

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On 9/19/2020 at 10:31 AM, PFindlay said:

Most of Buck's cars (and motorcycles) seem to have been projects that were passed on to others to make something of, but this one was an exception.  It's Buck's 1910 REO.  I don't know its story, but somehow he ended up with a mostly complete car and even used it for awhile.   Buck was pretty active in promoting early events which may or may not have actually come to be.  One which was very successful was the VCCC's 1958 Centennial Tour from Fernie to Victoria, and he drove the 1910 REO on that tour.  (At the time he called it a 1908 REO)

 

In 1959 Buck sold the REO to Dave Proctor and Dave toured with it for over 50 years. 

I had a nice chat with Dave today and he told me that his REO came out of Lillooet and was used as a stage there.  It was eventually stored in a shed and was pulled out after the war by a couple of guys hoping to use it for parades, but but was too far gone for them.   Apparently pieces of the body were literally falling off while Buck was towing it home so he had to go back and pick up the pieces.  According to Dave, when he acquired the REO there was still a piece that had the Lillooet Stage name on it but this has disappeared over the years.    Dave says he has seen a picture of the REO stage in the Lillooet museum.  He tried to tell the lady that it was a 1910, not a 1908, but she wouldn't hear of it.

 

So, I did a little digging and found that the Dec. 1912 B.C. registry lists only one car registered in Lillooet at that time.  It belonged to William George Cox Manson and it was a REO.  Manson's occupation is listed in directories as "farming and hunter's guide."  He kept the REO registered until at least Dec. 1919 and died in 1921.   The REO's plate number was 1079 but there is a note stating that its 1919 markers (plates?) were destroyed in a fire at the Clinton office in April 1919 so in May 1919 it was assigned plate number 1924.

 

I found the following picture of a Lillooet parade in the B.C. Archives.  It is dated 1915 but could be earlier.  I wonder if the car in the foreground is Dave's REO?  It is a circa 1910 left hand drive, so that narrows the field a whole lot.  The front fender doesn't look flat enough to be a 1910 REO, but could it have been rearranged after a collision or two?  If you take a look at the closeup  there is some writing on the rear door.  It would be nice to get a look at a large original if one exists.

 

Lillooet Parade1.jpg

 

 

Lillooet Parade2.jpg

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When I think of Vern Wellburn I think of the 1910 Russell or the Stanley, both mentioned earlier.  But Vern said that it was this 1924 Bullnose Morris Cowley - and driving on the 1958 Fernie to Victoria tour - that really changed his life.  It was his first old car and after that he was hooked for a lifetime.

 

The Morris was purchased in England and shipped to Shawnigan Lake on Vancouver Island.  The owner of the car was a female relative of Mr. Mason-Hurley who owned the Shawnigan Hotel.  She used the car for the next 32 years, making the daily 4 mile run into town to pick up the mail.  In 1956 Phil Foster heard that the car was for sale and passed the word on Gerry Wellburn.  Gerry and Vern paid $200 for the car.  

 

In 1958 Vern drove the Morris and joined the Fernie tour in Osoyoos, with wife Frances and daughter Kathy following in a modern car.  They made the 300 mile trip back to Victoria with a lot of overheating but no other problems.  Over the next five years he toured all over B.C. and the northwest in it and put almost 5000 miles on the 1500cc engine.

 

In 1962 Gerry and Vern acquired the Foster collection and the Morris took a back seat to the Russell, Stanley, and others.  It was put in storage in Duncan and only used for occasional outings. In 2008 Vern got the car back on the road for the re-creation of the VCCC Fernie to Victoria tour.  

 

There is a good article about Vern and the Bullnose Morris Cowley in the Feb/Mar 2008 edition of the VCCC magazine "The Vintage Car."

 

 

24MorrisCowley.jpg.3ac3be2b65647ca9cc57e746ed22eea0.jpg

1958 - note the Model A wheels.  The originals had been removed during the war because tires were unavailable.

When Vern got it, the Morris had 6.00 x 16 wheels on it!

 

1046048809_1924Morris5.jpg.3cf9447fcd2eabfe9a8e7bc71c49c6a3.jpg

1958 - joining the tour in Osoyoos, B.C.

 

 

 

485637202_1924Morris2.thumb.jpg.a017a42a116253da82fc98aed3ee6d54.jpg

2008 - at Fort Steele on the Fernie to Victoria Tour

 

1643805786_1924Morris3.thumb.jpg.fc7499184c15b962e857b2e1af3ec025.jpg

2008 - starting out in Fernie, B.C.

 

 

Edited by PFindlay
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Hello from Arrowtown NZ here is a pix with my car a 1931 Auburn 898A which I purchased in Victoria BC in 2006 . this car was sold new in Ontario  By McDonell Mackie on 18/3/31 it is a great old car quite original we have essentially just gone through the mechanicals and fitted a two speed Columbia axle .etc  it is I find quite modern to drive apart from the infamous ""steeldraulic" braking system !!!

 

it was quite an adventure travelling to Canada and shipping back to NZ but we love it !!

Auburn 1 with aiji.jpg

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This is a car the our father, Lorne Findlay, restored over many years.  He first spotted it in Coldstream, near Vernon, in 1963 while it was still in the possession of the original owner, Mr. Marle.  It's a fairly rare 1925 Maxwell Sport Roadster.  Marle had been the caretaker of the local municipal park and had used the Maxwell to tow a lawn mower to cut the grass.  At the time the car was quite complete and dad made an offer, but it was not for sale at the time. 

 

Eventually the car did sell and made its way to the coast by 1970 when a fellow named Pringle bought it.  He began work on the car (i.e. took it all apart) but had to sell it in 1972 and Dave Waters ended up with it.  In 1975 Dave offered it to dad.  In January of 1976 Dad, Ken, and some of the car buddies gathered up all the pieces and brought them home.

 

Mechanical work was dad's specialty and he had the Maxwell running 5 days later.  But it would take another 22 years before the car would be ready for the road as family, work, and a cross-country REO trip were higher priorities.  However, bit by bit he found or fixed pieces and attended to things like paint, plating, and upholstery and the car was ready (barely) for the 1998 Boxing Day run, along with 4 other Findlay cars driven by various family members.

 

Dad kept the car until 2014, by which time he had stopped driving.  The car was put up for sale and ending up going to Europe.   There is a good article about this car in the Feb/Mar 1999 issue of the VCCC magazine The Vintage Car.

 

1881048210_1925Maxwell3.thumb.jpg.7c79c1c298849a1dacdeb989cbdef401.jpg

1419501771_1925Maxwell1.thumb.jpg.b9d3042f0a10e6973d7fa1526fe58503.jpg

 

1374203660_1925Maxwell2.thumb.jpg.eeb2de77db7a9f0915d5caea4511e7e6.jpg

 

 

581356499_1925Maxwell4.thumb.jpg.5d9dbd7d341bb34967e07c84105b3bae.jpg

 

Edited by PFindlay (see edit history)
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On 10/13/2020 at 11:07 AM, PFindlay said:

When I think of Vern Wellburn I think of the 1910 Russell or the Stanley, both mentioned earlier.  But Vern said that it was this 1924 Bullnose Morris Cowley - and driving on the 1958 Fernie to Victoria tour - that really changed his life.  It was his first old car and after that he was hooked for a lifetime.

 

The Morris was purchased in England and shipped to Shawnigan Lake on Vancouver Island.  The owner of the car was a female relative of Mr. Mason-Hurley who owned the Shawnigan Hotel.  She used the car for the next 32 years, making the daily 4 mile run into town to pick up the mail.  In 1956 Phil Foster heard that the car was for sale and passed the word on Gerry Wellburn.  Gerry and Vern paid $200 for the car.  

 

In 1958 Vern drove the Morris and joined the Fernie tour in Osoyoos, with wife Frances and daughter Kathy following in a modern car.  They made the 300 mile trip back to Victoria with a lot of overheating but no other problems.  Over the next five years he toured all over B.C. and the northwest in it and put almost 5000 miles on the 1500cc engine.

 

In 1962 Gerry and Vern acquired the Foster collection and the Morris took a back seat to the Russell, Stanley, and others.  It was put in storage in Duncan and only used for occasional outings. In 2008 Vern got the car back on the road for the re-creation of the VCCC Fernie to Victoria tour.  

 

There is a good article about Vern and the Bullnose Morris Cowley in the Feb/Mar 2008 edition of the VCCC magazine "The Vintage Car."

 

 

24MorrisCowley.jpg.3ac3be2b65647ca9cc57e746ed22eea0.jpg

1958 - note the Model A wheels.  The originals had been removed during the war because tires were unavailable.

When Vern got it, the Morris had 6.00 x 16 wheels on it!

 

1046048809_1924Morris5.jpg.3cf9447fcd2eabfe9a8e7bc71c49c6a3.jpg

1958 - joining the tour in Osoyoos, B.C.

 

 

 

485637202_1924Morris2.thumb.jpg.a017a42a116253da82fc98aed3ee6d54.jpg

2008 - at Fort Steele on the Fernie to Victoria Tour

 

1643805786_1924Morris3.thumb.jpg.fc7499184c15b962e857b2e1af3ec025.jpg

2008 - starting out in Fernie, B.C.

 

 

That car appeared at the annual 'Spring Thaw' show in Calgary in 2015.

 

Craig

15st020.jpg

24_Morris.jpg

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This rare 1926 Chrysler Imperial roadster was sold ($3200) at Begg Motors in Vancouver early in 1927.  The buyer was CJOR radio station executive Randy Gardner.  Gardner drove the Chrysler to California several times and eventually sold it to Stan Cullen during WWII.  Cullen ran the Royal Oak Garage in Burnaby.  He removed the rumble seat and turned it into a tow truck.  One of his young summer workers was Al Lawson.

 

In 1955 Al played accordion for a group called The Kombo Kings.  The guys in the band thought it would be good publicity to buy the Chrysler and paint it up for the band. Al ended up buying the car for himself and in 1957 became one of the founding members of the Vintage Car Club of Canada.  

 

With the help of Begg Motors, Al got the Chrysler ready to go and drove it in the 1958 Fernie to Victoria tour.  After that, family and work took over and the car sat for 26 years.  After retiring Al was able to give it a full restoration which was completed in 2003.  It is one of only two 1926 Imperial roadsters known to still exist.

 

Here is a link to an article about the Imperial:
https://driving.ca/auto-news/news/roadster-one-of-two-known-to-exist

 

2032199025_26Chrysler.jpg.c1a4e1d492e657286fccc8d1b592c6c3.jpg

                     1958 - On the Fernie tour across B.C., sponsored by Begg Motors.

 

 

328217741_1926Chrysler3.jpg.8027019138b7e2d2e4f99de5c049eedf.jpg

 

 

1612602517_1926Chrysler4.jpg.ebddbf0a4e003e03fc32a8207d579623.jpg

 

 

498209627_1926Chrysler2.thumb.jpg.cd299f9141937ac91e8d6d849470dc91.jpg

 

 


 

Edited by PFindlay (see edit history)
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Many readers of this topic may not be aware that Morrises of this period have an American connection.  When the Morris Oxford was introduced in 1913 as an assembled car, it used British White and Poppe engines and Wrigley transmissions and front and rear axles.  William Morris was nothing if not frugal and by the time the Cowley was introduced in 1915, he had contracted with the Continental engine of Detroit to supply all the major mechanical components of the car at a lower cost, making the Cowley more competitive in an overcrowded low cost market.  Unfortunately, WW1 interrupted production and output was limited.  However, by 1919 Continental had sold the rights to the engine (Red Seal Model U), which they considered to be out of date, to Hotchkiss & Cie, a French armaments manufacturer which was transitioning into the automotive field and had a factory in Coventry. Morris now had a home based supply of components and by the time the Cowley featured here was built, Morris had bought the Hotchkiss factory and continued to use the engine until 1930.

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Longtime VCCC members will remember Jeff Harbottle and his Plymouth coupe.  In the 1930s Jeff's dad had a milk delivery business in North Vancouver.  In 1938 the company opened a new outlet at 14th and Lonsdale and also ordered a 1938 Diamond T 1 ton pickup.  Jeff went back to Chicago to pick it up and drive it home.

 

When the business was sold to Jersey Farms Ltd. of Vancouver in 1942 the Diamond T and other trucks continued in use and Jeff lost track of them.  Until 1986, that is.  On display at the Expo 86 car show was a Diamond T belonging to Dennis Montgomery.  Dennis had rescued it from a demolition derby in 1971.  He said that he found four Harbottle milk caps under the seat which enabled him to ID the truck.  By this time the truck had the wrong engine and had been converted to a flat deck with dual wheels.

 

In 1991 Jeff was able to buy the Diamond T and began a full restoration to bring it back to factory new condition.  It was completed in 1999 and the truck was donated to the North Vancouver Museum in 2004.  Jeff died in 2009, aged 95.  (Jeff's 32 Plymouth coupe is also at the North Van museum.)

 

There is an article about this truck in the October/November 1999 issue of the VCCC magazine The Vintage Car.

 

1974005460_1938diamondt2.jpg.bf4f70a9315ecaa4c1731dc414e7ee2b.jpg

                                                                      Before restoration

 

 

613361455_1938diamondt4.thumb.jpg.dfbe11816f5db17771a8b90fadcea6d9.jpg

                                                                          After restoration

 

 

8585240_1938diamondt3.thumb.jpg.d748f2e72f735d15da65fea5d7638ba9.jpg

 

 

harbottle-dairy-truck.thumb.jpg.ea103c32cd2036177f6eee0ffb75b148.jpg

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