Back a few years ago we spent an afternoon at an estate auction about a mile from the house. There was a big tent on the lot and security people at the site. As you scroll down to the second gallery, you will see the big draw for this unusual estate. We walked through the yard (with a lot of other people) looking at everything that the surviving family pulled out of the small house and old garage that sat out back. I had never seen so much stuff – just odds and ends, unusual furniture, tools, filing cabinets filled with receipts dating back to the 1950s. It was a fun afternoon and the first time I had seen an auction live in many, many years.
The two drawing cards for this auction were two vintage cars. A 1929 Ford Model A Roadster and a 1968 Shelby Mustang GT500KR with only 9000 actual miles on it. These vehicles had sat in the garage for at least ten years. Nevertheless, there was very competitive bidding for each vehicle. The Model A went for $23,000 and the Shelby went for $230,000. The last two bidders for the Shelby were proxies for a rich oil tycoon from the Middle East and for late-night host Jay Leno. We heard that Leno won the bid.
Sidenote: Earl’s Auction Company ran the auction that day. Earl, Junior, runs the company today. His father and founder of the company, Earl, Senior, was a high school classmate of my Dad at Tunnelton High School in southern Indiana back in the late 1930s/early 1940s. We used to go to Earl Senior’s auctions back many years ago.