Fellow Model T enthusiasts, Iím in need of your help. I am trying to track down and reacquire a specific 1923 Touring Car. The car once belonged to a Mr. David Stueck of Wyckoff, NJ. In the mid 2000s, the car was sold along with a 1930 Model A to another gentleman from Wyckoff (name withheld for privacy reasons). The buyer gave this Model T to his grandson, who sold it to a friend in California.
Unfortunately, this is all the information I have regarding the whereabouts of the vehicle. The only other data I have is in the form of the attached photographs.
You may be wondering why Iím even attempting to find this needle in a haystack. The short answer is that Iím David Stueckís grandson. Many of my favorite childhood experiences revolved around my grandfather and his car. Unfortunately, the car passed from our family under non-ideal conditions. At the time of sale, my grandfather was in early stages of Alzheimerís, and he later regretted giving it up. To me, this vehicle is intriguing for its history and unique for its sentimental value.
Time has passed, and I am now in a position to be a proper steward of this Model T. If you have seen this car, know the current owner, or have any clues or suggestions, I would be most grateful if you would share them with me. If not, please help me spread the word. Any information leading to its reacquisition will be rewarded. To compensate for any inconvenience, I assure the current owner that I will make the transaction profitable for them.
The chance of finding the car may be slim, but my grandfather told me that the Model T community has some of the greatest people. With your kind assistance, my effort may succeed. Thank you for your time and attention.
Note that the car in the photos is actually a 1924 Ford, not a 1923 Ford.
Keep that in mind when you hunt for the car as the current owner may have the car titled and registered under the correct model year. Knowing this may make your search slightly easier.
Thank you for the correction, Erik. For my own edification, how do you tell the difference between a late 1923 T4 and a 1924 T4?
Given the advanced age of the people involved,it certainly doesn't help either of the sides in solving your delima.Get permission to use real names.Otherwise it is like tying your hands behind you,blindfolding you a shoving you into a dark closet with the intent of catching a rattlesnake.
That's the perfect way to describe this, Jack. I'll be attempting to reestablish contact with the gentleman (or his next of kin) later this week. Updates to follow.
1923 tourings have a low radiator, low hood and low cowl.
1924 and 1925 tourings have a high radiator, high hood, high cowl, and an apron below the radiator.
The car in the photos has a high radiator, high hood, high cowl and an apron.
"1923" and "1924" are adjectives used to describe the model year, not the calendar year.
No reason to use terms such as "early" or "late" as a 1923 Model T is simply a 1923 Model T and a 1924 Model T is simply a 1924 Model T. 1923 Fords and 1924 Fords are distinctly different.
Two instant clues: the radiators on 24-25 Fords are an inch taller than on the 17-23 cars; easier to spot in a picture is the apron under the radiator which the 24-25 cars have but the 17-23 cars don't. This car was probably misidentified as a 1923 because of the difference between model years and calendar years. The 1924 model year began August 1, 1923, so cars made August through December, 1923, are 1924 Fords.
The photos will be too big for some to see without scrolling, so here they are in a size to fit most people's screens.
Matthew, I think you have a pretty good shot at finding this car. We're there any distinct identifying characteristics?Do you know the engine/title number? California will be lousy with '24 tourings with 30x3.5 natural spoke wheels. And if you throw in the nearly identical '25,then the number of ears of corn you will have to husk before you find the red one increases. I would wager a small sum that were you to offer a reward, nothing excessive,perhaps some BMV employee would bestir themselves.I have already emailed this thread to a friend that lives in CA and is familiar with T's because he grew up around them here in the Midwest. He takes his later model cars to at least a show a month.
Thank you so much, Jim!
I am more than willing to offer rewards to those who can help lead me back to the car. I am reluctant to specify a specific amount at this time, as there can be any number of people assisting with varying degrees of effort. I assure you I will do my best to be fair about it.
I can provide additional characteristics, with the understanding that they may have been altered over the years since my family had the car. I am also testing my memory, so please bear with me.
1) If I recall correctly, the engine suffered from a significant issue in the late 1990s/early 2000s. I believe it was a blown head gasket that had to be repaired.
2) There was a tan AACA sticker on the windshield (lower passenger side)
3) The hand crank was present, but could not be engaged. It think it was disconnected by my grandfather for safety reasons.
4) The pedals had rubber "C", "R", "B" caps on them.
5) The spare tire had a tan cover (I think there was a "Ford" script logo on the top, but I can't be certain).
6) There was a single circular red tail light (it may have been within the radius of the spare tire).
7) There was a small tin sign on the back of the car showing the front of a Model T, but I am fairly certain it was removed before it was sold.
Unfortunately, I do not have the title or engine number. My grandfather's illness was starting to interfere with his normally meticulous record keeping at the time of sale.
Will work to get more details on the first buyer.
Thanks for the wealth of information, Erik!
Maybe contacting the AACA club and see if they have any records of your Grandfather owning the car. And if they do maybe there was a AACA registration number that was associated with that car? Maybe the next owners reregistered it with the AACA? Its a long shot for sure but you never know for sure.
Other than that maybe the gentleman who bought the car and the others who acquired it later on might know someone who knew someone else and etc.
are the ones who might any info.
But you probably have already asked them.
Sorry, I don't have any particulars on the car. Just wanted to wish you the best in finding and acquiring it. Your grandpa looked like a nice guy. That makes getting it back all the more important I think.
Matthew, if any changes have been made to the appearance to this T since it left your area, there is a good chance even you could not possitivley identity it. Someone just recently made the suggestion to me I contact the insurance company I had in the early 80'sto get the VIN of a car I sold in '85.Not going to happen. BUT, if you can figure out who your grandfather's insurance Co. was, be worth a shot. Also, if he insured with one of the hobby companies,check with all of them. And, lastly, while I understand exactly the desire to have THE item from one's childhood memories, at least they are of a common car and could be duplicated easily.
When you have the engine number you can try the California DMV, but I think that's a dead end. When I tried to track down some history on an old car years ago they told me they purge their records after a few years.
The name of the buyer was CHARLES DELLA MONACHE of Lyndhurst, NJ (not Wyckoff).
Still searching for insurance documents that can lead to an engine number/VIN...
A Google search of Charles Della Monache shows a phone number in Lyndhurst. Maybe the man will talk to you.
Mr. (or maybe Mrs.) Google knows a lot...
Charles Della Monache in Lyndhurst, NJ - Complete Public Records ...
People Search in Lyndhurst, New Jersey. Charles Della Monache. *** 6th St Lyndhurst, NJ 07071-3318. Charles Della Monache Phone Number: 438-933-6438 .
More info if you put his name in the search box. Sure, he may not be there these days, but there may be other leads....like try to find auto records from the NJ Division of Motor Vehicles for him...or Lyndhurst town offices...