Back to back: 1920 Locomobile or 1919 Pierce-Arrow?

The Elkhart collection of 240 cars made us think of that 1980s classic comedy ‘Brewster’s Millions’ featuring Richard Pryor as Monty Brewster who inherits $300 million but only if he manages to spend $30 million in 30 days time.

The 240-strong car and motorbike collection located in Elkhart, Indiana, will be sold after its now-bankrupt owner was accused of fraud. The auctioneer who is selling all of them at no reserve shows pictures of a?massive and immaculate white hall?filled with all the classic cars that you’d just expect to be bought by a guy like Monty Brewster - reputation and expensiveness may have been main reasons for purchasing many of these in the first place.

But with so many cars there has to be some noteworthy stuff in between all that shimmer and shine, right? Of course, there is. But it’s mostly the more down to earth stuff, which appeals to us. PreWar (and PostWar)-wise all the usual suspects are there. But we fell for this lovely 1929?Swallow bodied Austin 7 ‘Beetleback’?and for this 1933?Dodge Brother tow truck.

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1920 Locomobile Model 48 Series 7 Sportif

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And how about this great duo? A?1920 Locomobile?Model 48 Series 7 ‘Sportif’ and 1919 Pierce-Arrow Series 31 Four-Passenger Roadster? To start with the first: it’s been in a well-known collection for much of its life. From 1940-on, when it was just 20 years old, it was owned by D. Cameron Peck, the Chicago dairy heir and early AACA president. In 1947 Peck sold it to California citrus rancher Lindley Bothwell, who kept it at his ‘Rancho Riconada’ alongside many more brass era racers until 2004. The car has never been fully restored, with the body never having been off the chassis. The 30,831 miles on the clock are believed to be original. Estimated to sell at $150,000?to $200,000 it won’t come cheap though.

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1919 Pierce-Arrow Series 31 Four-Passenger Roadster

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The Pierce-Arrow?is another car that won’t go for a mere pittance either. Its estimate is $200,000?to $250,000 but then it’s only one of three survivors and with documented history since 1930. That year a Joe W. Buttress of South Pasadena, California bought the then 11-year-old car. It changed hands one more time before Ray Nelson got hold of it. He was a very early California car collector who kept the car until his death in 1978. Four more enthusiasts followed until now, with one repaint in between. ‘The older interior and top remaining intact and in wonderfully patinated condition (…) It has been used, but not abused, and carefully preserved and enjoyed for all its long life.’

Words by Jeroen Booij. Pictures courtesy of RM Sotheby's.

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Gepubliceerd: Wednesday October 14th, 2020

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