what your thoughts of donating a car to a museum?
Will they keep it or sell it later to pay for operating costs. Or decide to close down and sell for profit?
I mean, I guess if you have some kind incredibly correct and unmolested car then you could give it to a museum. But, it's a car. As such it SHOULD be driven. If you don't want to keep it sell it to someone who will love it and drive it. Heck, if you're willing to donate it to a museum consider donating it to a younger T-er will love and cherish it forever. LIKE ME!! Lol, seriously though, just as many if not more people will get to enjoy your car if you give it to someone who will drive it. I don't think there are very many cars out there that are truly worth preserving and saving forever, but that's just me.
Folks on here talk about all the time what will happen with their T's when they're gone. I've said before and I will say again that if anyone is ever seriously considering passing their T on to a caretaker who won't tweak it or make it into a speedster then I'll be thrilled to do it. I have a speedster that already gets all the mods and goodies. I'd love to take of (but still drive pretty often) a very correct T. I'll be honest and say I'm not going to run babbitt thrust washers, but I could definitely have and maintain a car who's only safety upgrade was a rebuilt rear-end. Anyway, I've typed long enough, ya'll get the idea.
Whether you sell it or donate it, once your Model T is out of your hands, the new owner is free to do whatever they want with it. Unfortunately once we are gone, there is nothing we can do to ensure that our Model T won't suffer an undesirable fate such as falling into the hands of a Boyd Coddington type.
If you are thinking about donating it, it would be best to donate it to a young, enthusiastic member of the MTFCA where it would have the best chance of surviving into the future as a Model T. Jim Patrick
the RULE: once given, it is gone from your control
"Will they keep it or sell it later to pay for operating costs. Or decide to close down and sell for profit?"
Any of that is possible.
We have a couple of cars that I frequently tell people will probably end up in a museum eventually. Personally, I don't like the idea of our cars becoming a static display, however I enjoy seeing cars at museums so a little hypocrisy there. I guess the bottom line is it's up to the owner. If you wish your car(s) to be on display for people to see a museum is a good option.
If you wish others to drive and be seen driving your cars, then trying to send them on to a good home might be the way to go. The other consideration is, do you wish the value of your cars to be transferred to a museum/organization, or do your heirs need/deserve the proceeds?
I would think you could dictate to the organization you donate the cars to that they not be sold. However, you cannot guarantee the museum/organization will exist forever (and it probably won't) and then your car will go where ever the directors or receivers decide.
Now I'm depressed, time for a Model T drive..........
You guys are right in that once it leaves your hands it's open to anything happening. I'm just saying that he should explore working with a young T-er like Jim suggests. It's not like I've been flooded with requests to care for folks cars, but I maintain that I would have no problem keeping it in accordance with the giver's wishes.
Robert, I too have thought of this.
My feeling is if you are to give,or sell do your best to find a good home for your car. Hopefully you will find a like minded person or organation with the same passion that you have for your car. But do it uncondionally. or you may be disapointed if their goals are not yours in the long term. No one can predict the future. museums can fail and so can people. I have more than a few years to think about this topic but it is on my mind a lot lately.
Sounds like a GREAT idea! My newly formed museum (about 5 minutes ago) is accepting any and all Model T donations..... Back to your question. Museums I went to years ago that had model T's in them seem to change the inventory and have sold off the T's and replaced them with newer "antiques". Unless it's your museum (or my new one!) chances are somewhere down the road it will no longer be there.
Like Dave said, once you donate you lose all rights to said item. Even as to whether they display it or not.
I've dealt with this kind of thing many times.
It can be sold, stored, displayed, transferred, or auctioned. Sadly, even destroyed if they desire.
I see that it is common now for many museums to sell some or all of their collection in order to cover operating costs. Who knows yours might even be the first one sold soon after you have donated.
How about a "permanent loan" where if the museum closes or wants to get rid of it ,it goes to the heirs, but that would need to be worked out with lawyers and all parties.just a thought.
Rick I seen that at the Curtis Airplane Museum where the owners of the vehicles just display them on a yearly basis
How about our own museum? Are the cars displayed and in storage there still owned by the "donator" and on loan for a predetermined amount of time? Or are they now owned by the museum? I suppose that eventually, if even a small number of us donated our cars to our museum, they may be quickly overwhelmed with more cars than they can handle!
People often loan items to museums for a period of time. It costs money to set up and maintain displays so naturally they would want to have your car on display for a long length of time.
I totally agree with Jim Patrick and Mike Conrad. I like Jim's idea of donating it to a hobbyist who will treasure and take care of your car.
My family encountered a similar situation with a McDonnell F-101 jet plane(that my late father had bought in 1976. literally #1 off of the assembly line) My father saved the plane from destruction as it six weeks from being scrapped. It was stored in an outdoor museum in Pueblo, Co (PWAM) for thirty years and, even though Dad fully owned the plane, it suffered immeasurable damage from the weather and vandals. His hope was to restore the plane himself, but he never had the funds to move it or restore it.
PWAM gave us an ultimatum in 2009 (Dad passed away in 2008) that either we donate the plane to them or move it off the property. We did not like how PWAM took care of Dad's plane, so Mom put me in charge of finding a musuem who would display it and restore it to Dad's wishes. It took several months, but we found a home at Evergreen Air Museum in McMinnville, OR.
Like yourself, we were concerned with what would happen to the plane once we donated it. You sort of have a say in what is going to initially happen to your piece of merchandise when the donation contract is made up, but you eventually have to put your trust that the organization is going to heed to your wishes and that they are not going to go belly-up. Fortunately for us, Evergreen has done what we have asked up to this point. You can see a photo of the plane at http://evergreenmuseum.org/new-artifact-mcdonnell-f-101a-voodoo/
That's a great story, Jim. I've been to that museum a couple times with my grandfather. They have a good write-up at that link you posted.
No not really. i tried giving museums WW2 artifacts still in their original unopened boxes to museums but they said "We do not accept that" and basically spat in my face so i left them to a junk shop. Probably destroyed by now.
Fantastic story -- I get excited about things like "your" airplane. I love going to Wright Patterson in Dayton, the museum at Indy, and the Ford museum in Dearborn.
We have the Collings Foundation in nearby Stow Mass with some fantastic automobiles and airplanes. They also do the Wings of Freedom Tour and have the Vietnam Memorial Flight Program.
Did I tell you that I get tears in my eyes thinking about the Blue Angels?
OK Got to stop being sappy!!!
I bought my 26 T out of a personally owned museum who had several historical cars in it here locally... He liquidated all of his cars and motorcycles except for maybe one or two... I got it for a decent price, knowing the motor wouldn't turn over, but not knowing much or I should say nothing about a T.... I just liked the looks of it... I soon found out it was only a cosmetic restoration... It was beautiful inside out, underneath was as spotless as anything on top...Unreal condition, until I started trying to get the motor unstuck....And there started my experience with the model T....I tried everything I could to get it loose with no good results...I was excited and couldn't wait to pull the motor and get started on the rebuild like I have on many from the time I bought my first car at the age 16... Little did I know what was soon to come....All the tools I had wasn't enough even to tear it completely down without going to ebay and buying some square sockets...And after I finally had everything completely dissembled I looked at my wife and said "I can't even rebuild this" all she knew to say is (and why?)...If it hadn't been for the now late Mr. Lynn Cook taking me in like a step-child it would probably still be in boxes trying to figure out what the heck I had bought...And after all he did to the motor and tranny I brought it home and installed it only to drive a couple weeks and have the Babbitt fly apart in the rear end... So I removed it and headed to Mr. Cooks again...I sure owe him a lot...But story is, not all museum pieces it a great find unless... 1.You know how to work on them 2. Purchase them at a great steal 3. Or in my case, found a friend like Mr. Cook.
Museums are always selling things as it seems like every new Director or Set of Directors have different ideas about what should be in it.They might have your best interests at heart and those of other Car Owners but if they got a chance to buy a Dinosaur which they felt would be a bigger draw than "another car" and they were strapped for cash then your car could be sold especially if you gave it to them with No strings attached.
One way to stop this is to give them a permanent or a 50 year Loan with the understanding that if they wanted to sell it that they would have to advise you or your heirs and ask permission.If you say No then it reverts back to you.
Big Museums are guilty of selling stuff off just
like the small ones!I hope that the LeMay Collection is not broken up like the Harrah Collection
Ps Make sure if you donate your car to a Museum that the area is not prone to Sink Holes
An old automobilia dealer once said to me 'Never give anything to a museum, it will be spoilt,sold or stolen' and I am sorry to say I have seen many cases where he was proved right. Also I remember visiting the Donnington Grand Prix Collection with my brother during a Vintage Sports Car Club weekend - halfway round, he stopped dead, said 'This is a mausoleum, it's depressing, there are live cars out on the track, let's watch them'
Cars should be owned by individuals who love them and use them.
Hey Kep, I tried donating a Russian half-frame 35mm camera that was given to Steve Prefontaine as a goodwill gift when he was in that country running in a competition.
I got the camera from his parents when I was 17 and years later got a letter of authenticity signed by them.
Several years ago I tried donating it to the University of Oregon's then new track and field museum on campus and I couldn't get even so much as a call back after several attempts. (UofO was the school Prefontaine went to and where he became an Olympic track star holding world records.)
So I sold it on eBay.
I guess is depends on the museum and its reputation. Depending on the brand, vintage and rarity of your automobile (Simplex, Stutz, Winton, Stevens-Duryea, Peerless, Thomas Flyer, Lozier, Mercer) you could get a lawyer and draw up a permanent loan deal with conditions spelled out. I doubt anybody would make promises over a plentiful Model T Ford, though.
The Tin Lizzie is to pre-war cars as the AT-6 Texan is to WWII warbirds; it's the most common thing out there, but it allowed a whole lot of folks to get into the hobby who would otherwise not have been able to afford it (myself included).
Now, there are some upscale museums that operate and exercise their cars (and the Fountainhead Antique Auto Museum in Fairbanks, Alaska comes to mind). Other museums will take your car off the road, embalm the poor thing, polish it up real pretty and turn it into a static piece of sculpture. From my point of view, that's downright tragic.
If you're talking about a Model T, the hobby might be better served if you were to find a young enthusiast who can't quite afford it, but wants it bad enough to give the car a very good home and keep her stalwart, tin heart beating. Maybe you'd be willing to take a little hit on the price for such an individual. We sure do need to get more young people into this hobby—or it just ain't gonna be around for too many more decades.
Well, at 59 yrs., 8 mos. I'm not "young" but still plan on being around for a while, so should anyone seriously want to donate any T to an MTFCA member, I'd lovingly accept one!! And trust me, it'd never ever be molested other than the usual maintenance stuff like bearings & rebuilds to keep it running and running safe. I'm working on my "bucket list" of those to maybe send my T's off to once I go to that Model T dealership in the sky.
Why not donate it to the new model T museum with the intent that they find it a good/deserving home should they decide to get rid of it. That way, you get the write off, and can be relatively sure it will be well cared for. The museum probably has more avenues to choose, and would possibly benefit from it in multiple ways.
My dad and I have discussed this about his 58 Harley. I cant ride it.Heck I cant even kick it to crank it. But I really dont want to give it up when he is gone just because I cant ride it. But he had mentioned sometime back about donating it to a museum and I explained to him they sell off stuff all the time to the highest bidder.
My T's,no one will probably want them as they are assembled vehicles and not original. So this is a problem for me to be thinking about later on.
They have what they call a family trust, Larry Porters cars are on loan at the AACA museum they are the alphabet collection of Fords prior to the T's, every body style and make. If the museum decides to get rid of them they will then go back to the heirs of his and then they can sell them or keep them, that is a whole lot better deal than some idiots getting tired of looking at a car so they decide to sell it. Look what happened to the Henry Ford museum collection back in the 80's !! Now they wish they had half of them back!
There are places that have cars and such on long term loan form the owners;
is one sample.
We have a 1912 Pathfinder Cruiser on display at the San Diego Automotive Museum. It's a great set up....they keep it polished and protected and it is on display for public view. Much better than remaining hidden stored in a garage. I maintain insurance on the car and can see or remove it at any time. I have a contract with the Museum specifying these conditions. The Museum does rotate the cars and those not on display are carefully stored in a secure building. If you have more cars than you can drive or maintain and do not want to sell them.....this is a possible alternative. No! I do not intend on donating the car/cars to the Museum. The cars are all one's that my 96yr. old Dad and I restored (With The Help Of Friends) starting in 1958.
If you are considering donating a Model T to a museum, you might want to see if The Henry Ford would accept the car for the Model T ride program in Greenfield Village. In talking to some of the people there a year ago, they told me they would like to have additional Model T's to fill in some of their year gaps, but really didn't have a budget to do it. I think they have a 1916, but no 1915 for example. I believe they are the only museum actually operating Model T's.
But once you donate a car to ANY museum, they are basically free to do what they want with it. Most won't accept donations with any restrictions about future sales, as who can predict the future.
If you have a nice car, and you no longer wish to keep it, the best approach is to sell it yourself to the highest bidder. The more someone pays for a car, the more likely they are to respect it and maintain it. And use it! And if you don't, there is a good chance that some museum will sell your car in 10 or 20 years to the highest bidder anyway, so why not get that money for yourself.
Hows about finding a deserving young person who has an interest in old cars, and giving them a percentage interest in the car. You could make a legal contract that when you are gone it is theirs. Until that time, it could be a shared experience set up how ever works for both parties.
Maybe I am naive, but at some future time, a jaunt in the 'ol flivver might might be a hoot
All of the above posts and not one mentions the
MTFCA Museum in Richmond, IN ....
You know - organization that makes it possible
for everyone to have a public forum to post on ...
Among other things ....
If you have not been to the MTFCA Museum,
pay them a visit ....
If you have a Model T to donate ...
That should be your FIRST CHOICE ....
It was mentioned by Dave at 03:52.
The MTFCA museum is a great place to visit! Great displays and friendly staff..........
I read that and I guess I misunderstood what
Dave in Dayton was saying.
A LOT of hard work and long hours have made the
MTFCA what it is today - many do not seem to appreciate that ......
Jim...well, even though I'd LOVE to accept a donated car to me (who wouldn't) I've mentioned many a time that my firetruck will most likely go to the museum. My biggest worry though is that the place is pretty tight for space already, and they do already have one firetruck, would they really want mine? Would they keep it a while, then get rid of it? This is a Pirsch, and from what I can tell, Model T Pirsch's are getting pretty scarce. Hate to see it go to rot and ruin, while I'm going to rot and ruin!!
Think of a time line, now let's say that a certain T was built during April of 1914, today is April of 2014, during the past 100 years, how many different caretakers has this car had and where do you the currant caretaker fit? I am a Christian and I believe that at the end of time, all things will pass. With this train of thought, I say, enjoy the car while you're here now and don't worry about what will happen to it in the future.
Just as a supporting claim to my statement read this link:
I think this helps prove my point that no matter how had you try, when you pass anything can and will happen to your treasures.
There are expansion plans for the museum.
I do not think they are going anywhere else,
the town has embraced them and the surrounding
downtown area carries both the Model T and National Road theme.
There is a storage building across the room from the museum.
I would address your concerns directly to the museum.
Quite a few folks smarter than I am have chose to
donate to the MTFCA Museum.
I have a bad firsthand experience with the GM Heritage Museum in my past - so I have " been there and done that " .....
Like Jem said, a museum is next thing to a mausoleum.
Suggesting that a Model T owner not worry about what will become of his precious T after he is gone, is like suggesting a parent not to worry about what will become of his children after he has passed. Naturally, a parent will do all he can, while still here, to ensure the welfare of his children's future and it is no different when comparing this analogy to the mindset of the Model T owner who has spent countless hours and thousands of dollars on his T. You are right that once we are gone, it is out of our hands, but while we are still living, we will try to come up with ways to preserve our babies for continuing their journey into the future as T's without us. Some will survive and some won't but chances are, those that survive as Model T's long into the future belonged to an owner that cared what happened to it. Jim Patrick
I believe the term is "legislating from the grave" Unless you have a rather large endowment that guarantees your cars future, anything can and will happen to your car when you are gone.
Why do you care what happens to your car. You and your family had fun with it I hope and still having fun with it.
I guess you think you will end up somewhere in the heavens and be able to see that car. I hate to burst your bubble, but I do not think that will happen.
"Will" it to your kids if you have any or as posted above, will it to a museum or some young T person as you will not be able to use it.
If you leave it in your garage, one of those scrap metal salvage places may get it????
If you want to know how secure things are when you donate them to a museum, just Google "museum liquidation"
I can guarantee you that while you're lying on your "death bed," things like Model T's, money, politics and the like, will be the farthest things from your mind!
Mike, that is off-topic, and not helpful.
I've sure been selling T stuff cheaper than I ever thought I would. Younger son wants both the ol' brass picup and the Speedster. We just have to reassemble the Speedster. I hope I last long enough. Things are looking better than 4 months ago.
Every time I think about driving the T, son beats me to it, and I ride shotgun.
Just got through reading the January Vintage Ford with Fred Houston's Fordson on the cover. Fred donated the restored tractor to the Model T Museum. Well done Fred!
You can always consider donating to the Piquette. I do not know how many cars they already have or if most are just loaners. They also have tons of room.
Ralph, Not a day goes by that you don't come to mind. Stay strong my friend.
Don't get me started, Mike. Don't get me started.
"Mack Cole ---- Earth on Thursday, April 17, 2014
My T's,no one will probably want them as they are assembled vehicles and not original. So this is a problem for me to be thinking about later on."
Nothing wrong with assembled vehicles! Mine is one and is the most fun.
They are yours to do with whatever you choose, there's a lot of folks out there that would love and care for your cars for years and years to come..... So with that said if your going to give them away why not give them to a young vintage car enthusiast that can't afford to get into the hobby and make a dream come true for someone that you see fit to care for something that you may no longer be able too. Kind'a like Rob said I'd hate to think my car just sat after I passed away, they were meant to be a thing of beauty and to be seen and used. Otherwise they are just old stuff sitting in the garage or museums..... I see gun collectors do the same thing they want to put everything under glass, you can't touch it, you can't feel it, you can't enjoy it, it's to me like having a picture hanging on the wall just something else to look at then after a while it's never noticed anymore it's just there.
After reading and rereading this thread, I think that finding someone younger and with a similar frame of mind would be a better solution for the future of one's car. How good it would feel to know I have helped nurture interest in this piece of history.
I decided to give away the cars to the kids who worked for me at the shop. They enjoyed working on the cars. So I invited them over yesterday and told them to pick one. I think this is the best way for the cars to be enjoyed.
Well done, Robert!
The hobby just gained several proud and enthusiastic new owners.
In my opinion you've made a heck of a good choice... Now your cars live on, but the Great thing is they live on with the ones that were directly associated with you and the cars.
I'll bet you took them by complete surprise, they will never forget you Robert..... WoW what a way to impact someones life you did well my friend.
Steve The one boy came home from college Fri. He called and asked if I have anything he can do. Like always I always have something to do. I like to keep the kids busy in the shop or around the property. They like working here its a different and casual experience both learning and being exposed to the cars.
Well-played, Robert! That's a wonderful thing you did. And now you have no worries about your cars' being underappreciated, or hot rodded, or becoming a static display. Just wonderful!
People like you Robert are the ones that make it happen for others, the world needs more folks like you....
The subject of what will I do with the car(s) is not easy for most people to get into. I am fortunate in that I have a sons that appreciate the T's and I know that they will be in good hands when I'm not able to take care of them. This subject was brought to my mind several years ago when we had a club tour and during the dinner someone showed slides of previous tours from about 40 years ago to about 10 years ago. When I saw some of the cars, my first thought was where are they now. In talking about this with others in the club they could not remember or knew when someone offered the family a price that was far below what should have been paid but to someone in the family who didn't ever participate in the fathers hobby thought was a windfall. This has happened too many times and we all sit back a wring our hands about the impossibility of younger club members getting a brass or early car. I wish others had the foresight to plan for their wishes to have someone get to enjoy their hobby/car. Just talking!!
I see on positives here. The car isn't that rare and therefore might not be appreciated as much by a museum. Next it's off the road and might never get back if sold off for junk or whatever. The capper is there's no money to be made by survivors or heirs. Of course if that's what you wanted in the first place..........
I like the idea of finding a younger person with interest to give the car to. If someone gave one to me to drive and enjoy and keep as is I would feel it should be given to the next young person when I am done with it. I wont need the money from it and it was a gift to start with so why not? After what I did to restore my 25 Indiana over 32 years I would hate to know it ended up a rat rod after I am gone. I feel the same way about a nice brass T. I would love to own a 12 touring but want it as original as possible. Just a dream for me because I could never buy one for what its worth but could keep it on the road if I found one. That would be my dream car and would make someones dream come true after I was done with it too.
Up to this point I had thought about a museum for my truck after I am gone but I might need to rethink this now.......
Do you think the top 1% or their heirs will want a Model T? 60% of the total income in the US from 1977-2007 went to the top 1%. We are in the throes of an oligarchy like none other in history. The middle class will continue to shrink rapidly, as the 1% complete their take over of the Federal Government and write laws favoring them even more. Their heirs will grow ever richer.
"Capital" is a new book on economics that Bill Moyers reviewed tonight. It ain't pretty.
After reading all your comments there is a real easy way out of this and the owner can still enjoy the car. Give the car to a young model T club member in your area and make him the custodian of it for 12 months but he has to take you on club or local runs and if he is not what you want share it with another one on the same plan till your happy with the driver then let him look after it and its his when you kick the bucket. It will give some one a part in its running and responsibility for looking after it and as I said he is custodian while your here and I would say he would treat it like gold.
I watched that program last night ...
I am going to get that book .
I'm with Ray - sign me up!
About 6 years ago we gave my nephews a rolling chassis. Over the winter they got the engine running and with the help of their dad they built a speedster/pickup body for it. They drove it to school and to local car shows. When the oldest graduated from high school we gave him a 23 roadster. This was the assembly car at the T centennial. They took it apart one last time, painted it and re-assembled it. Now each of them have a Model T to enjoy. We did tell him if we are alive and he wants to get rid of it or hotrod it, we want it back. There is nothing in writing that can enforce that but they know where we stand. Hopefully they will remain interested in Model Ts. Only time will tell.
About donating anything, once heard "Do your givin' while you're livin', so you're knowin' where it's goin'..." My dad recognized, a few years before his passing, that his '26 TT had my interest since before I was 12 years old. (He had purchased it for $50 in 1942 to use on the farm.) As he handed me the title (asking "If I knew what it was?"), he said "You can have it, as long as you promise that you're going to fix it up, not 'hot rod' it, AND, that it stays in the family." One of my daughters had expressed her interest, and now her son (age 14) likes to come over "to work on 'His' truck"! Yes, I've put the title into my daughter's name, and the entire family is aware of maintaining my dad's wishes. It is unlikely 'Model T-ers' will ever disappear!
People donate stuff to museums and when they find out the museum didn't put it right out in front for the whole world to see, they get upset. You have to ask yourself if it's the T you're worried about, or are you trying to help the museum? If it's the T, then maybe a museum is not the right place to donate. If it is the museum, then maybe they need money worse than they need a Model T. If so, then selling the Model T is what is best for them. And if it was the museum you were worried about when you made your donation, then you should be happy with their decision.
When I was a an early teen, a friend of my parents gave me a bunch of old stuff dealing with steam locomotives. There were some repair manual type books and some sort of training tool with what was once an operating valve gear made of cardboard and plastic. Unfortunately the plastic had long since shrunken up and it no longer worked. I kept that stuff for many years, but finally decided I would give it to the Tennessee Valley Railroad. They were the closest operating steam railroad I knew of at the time and we occasionally went there to ride the train. I gave the stuff to the guy at the ticket counter. He thanked me and gave us two free tickets. A few days later, I got a letter from them thanking me and telling me that the books would go into their technical library. At first, I was disappointed that they weren't going into a nice showcase for the whole world to see, but after some thought, it occurred to me that those books might help them get or keep a locomotive going. That would be SO much better than someone seeing them in a display case.
'Course, on the other hand....they may be using them for beer coasters out in the shop..........
A Big no. Talk to the folks in San Diego with all the work they did on a Model T only to be rebuffed by the new museum director. To many times, people donate with an expectation, only to have new museum directors not honor the intent of the donors
The only museum to which I'd ever consider donating my Flivver would be our very own Model T Museum in Richmond, Indiana. They're our friends and we can trust them.
But my '15 Touring is so common—and I've been given to understand that more exist today than were ever actually manufactured—that they probably already have a dozen waiting in storage.
Then again, maybe I'll become real lucky and my daughter will develop an interest in the hobby and I can then pass ol' "Penelope" down at least one generation.