Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Hallowe'en!

TACA wishes you and your family a safe and happy Hallowe'en!

(Post credit: Kit Fox; image credit: Microsoft clip art)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Tucker No. 1010 to be Auctioned in January 2011

Tucker No. 1010, fresh from the "barn"
Hemmings Blog reports that Tucker No. 1010 will be auctioned by Gooding & Company at its upcoming auction in Scottsdale, AZ on January 21 and 22, 2011.  According to the blog post, No. 1010--reportedly stored in a barn in the Pacific Northwest for the past half-century--is un-restored with (purportedly) less than 10,000 miles on the odometer.  Click here to read the Hemmings Blog post and reader comments.  You can also read more about No. 1010 (and see lots more photos) on the TACA message board by clicking here.

(Post credit: Kit Fox and Hemmings Blog; photo credit: Hemmings Blog)

Monday, October 25, 2010

Tucker Topics, Volume 38, No. 9

This month's issue of our award-winning print newsletter, Tucker Topics, includes a fascinating article about Ricardo Iraheta and the creation of Tucker No. 1051-1/2 by Natalie Kochmar of The eXperimental Garage; a tribute to the late George Boucher (TACA No. 41), who passed away in August 2010; and updates on TACA's recent forays into social networking.  Check your mailbox for future issues of Tucker Topics for details about the 2011 TACA Convention in Los Angeles, CA!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Tucker No. 1045 at the Motorclassica

One of our Facebook fans in Australia, Adam Williams, shares these photos of Tucker No. 1045 on display at the Motorclassica in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia on October 24th.

UPDATE 10/24/10 6:21 PM: Tucker No 1045 won "best in class" at the Motorclassica Concours d'Elegance!  Tony Decinque shared this photo on the TACA Facebook page.

(Post credit: Kit Fox; photo credits: Adam Williams and Tony Decinque)

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Tucker Road Trip, Day 5

It's a pretty long leg of the Tucker Road Trip from the Southeast USA to the Pacific Northwest, but that's where we find Tucker No. 1007 on display at the LeMay Museum in Tacoma, WA. "America's Car Museum" is housed in a former Catholic boys' school (Marymount Academy), with beautiful cars on display in the former auditorium, gymnasium, boys' locker room--even the indoor swimming pool!

Tucker No. 1007
Harold and Nancy LeMay amassed the largest privately-owned collection of automobiles, motorcycles, trucks, other vehicles and related memorabilia in the world. At its peak, the LeMay Collection numbered in excess of 3,000 vehicles and thousands of artifacts and was listed in the Guinness Book of World Records. In 1998, Harold and Nancy LeMay formed the 501(c)(3) charitable organization, The Harold E. LeMay Museum, and committed themselves to donating the vast LeMay Collection to the Museum for the benefit of the public. The LeMay Museum was chartered to secure, preserve and interpret the valuable LeMay Collection, along with additional vehicles and artifacts that it may acquire, in order to explore the broad themes of American mobility and lifestyle in an instructive and entertaining manner.

The LeMay Museum is located at 325 152nd St. E., Tacoma, WA 98445, and is open year-round for guided tours only. The museum is located southeast of downtown Tacoma, near the interchange of I-5 and WA-512, and less than an hour south of Seattle. Check the museum's website for directions and more information.


(Post credit: Kit Fox; photo credit: TACA website)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Tucker No. 1045 on Display in Melbourne, Australia this Weekend

Hot off the "Google Alert" presses:

"A rare Tucker car made famous in a Hollywood movie with Jeff Bridges has arrived in Australia for a three-day international classic car show in Melbourne starting on Friday.

The Tucker, worth more than $1 million and one of just 50 ever made in 1948, is powered by a rear-mounted helicopter engine.

The designer and builder of the car, Preston Tucker, was brought undone by legal and financial battles, but his car became a legend.

A Melbourne businessman bought the Tucker in the United States in August for $US1.14 million ($A1.15 million).

It will be one of more than 80 classic cars driven through Melbourne on Friday morning as a prelude to the Motorclassica, the Australian International Concours d'Elegance and Classic Motor Show."


Check the Motorclassica website for more information about this exciting event "down under!"

(Post credit: Jay Follis and the Sydney Morning Herald; photo credit: TACA website)

Sunday, October 17, 2010

San Diego Tucker Weekend

Tucker No. 1019 at the
San Diego Automotive Museum
This blogger took another quick overnight trip to visit a Tucker in Southern California this past weekend.  This time, my destination was the San Diego Automotive Museum, home of Tucker No. 1019No. 1019 has been on display at the museum in in San Diego's Balboa Park for many years, thanks to the generosity of TACA member Deb Hull and her family.  This "Waltz blue" beauty--reportedly Vera Tucker's favorite color--is a wonderful addition to the museum's holdings, which also include a rare Tucker 589 engine.  The Tucker display includes an enlarged reproduction of Jay Follis' March 2010 article from Old Cars Weekly regarding the fate of the 4 "lost" Tuckers.  Besides No. 1019, I particularly enjoyed seeing Louie Mattar's Fabulous $75,000 Car, a highly modified 1947 Cadillac that made record-breaking non-stop cross-country runs in the early 1950s.

Balboa Park Conservatory
Balboa Park is a 1,200-acre urban oasis in the heart of San Diego, and is home to the world-famous San Diego Zoo and numerous museums and other local cultural institutions, including the San Diego Air & Space Museum and the Old Globe Theatre.  Most of the existing park structures were originally developed for the 1915-16 Panama-California Exposition and the 1935-36 California Pacific International Exposition.  It was a very popular place on a Saturday afternoon in October!

Keep checking our "Tucker Road Trip" posts for information about Tuckers on public display.  And feel free to send us your photos and comments on Tuckers displayed near you! 

(Post & photo credits: Kit Fox)

Monday, October 11, 2010

It's Columbus Day

Enjoy the day off (if you get one)!

(P.S. - This was our 25th post!)

(Post credit: Kit Fox)

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Tucker Road Trip, Day 4

Tucker No. 1005
The Tucker Road Trip returns stateside with a visit to the Tallahassee Antique Car Museum in Tallahassee, FL, home to Tucker No. 1005.  The Tallahassee Antique Car Museum (TACM) is an expression of the personal creed and crusade of Devoe Moore, and includes not only American automobiles but also such unique antiques and collectibles as pedal cars, cash registers, can openers, spark plugs and time pieces.

TACM is located at 6800 Mahan Dr., Tallahassee, FL 32308, in the beautiful Florida Panhandle.  It's just off I-10, roughly half-way between Mobile, AL and Jacksonville, FL.  Check the TACM website for more information.


(Post credit: Kit Fox; photo credit: TACA website)

Monday, October 4, 2010

Exclusive TACA Membership Offer for Tucker Tribune Followers and Fans

The Tucker Tribune blog has been up for only a couple of months and we want to reward you for taking the plunge with us.  Join the Tucker Automobile Club of America, Inc. (TACA) with a new membership for yourself (or as a gift) between now and November 15, 2010, and we will extend membership and subscription to the award-winning monthly printed newsletter TUCKER TOPICS by six additional months! That’s right– join TACA today and receive a one half year FREE—that’s a total of six extra issues of TUCKER TOPICS mailed to your door!

Okay, here’s the fine print: This special introductory offer is for NEW memberships only, and is available in the US and Canada at $30.00, other countries at $50.00 per membership. Orders by mail must be postmarked or received via PayPal no later than November 15, 2010, to qualify for the FREE six month extension.  All memberships under this special offer will be good until February 29, 2012.

So, turn your passion for the Tucker story into action by joining TACA and helping us “Keep the Legend Alive,” and get 18 monthly newsletters for the cost of 12. Mail your check or money order for $30.00, postmarked no later than November 15, 2010, for this special offer to: TACA Tribune Membership Offer, 9509 Hinton Drive, Santee, CA 92071–2760.  To pay by PalPal or credit card, e-mail to take advantage of this special offer.  Be sure to mention the “Tribune Membership offer” and include the name, full mailing address, and e-mail address for each new membership you’re purchasing.

(Post credit: Jay Follis)

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Black & White & Tucker All Over

Tucker No. 1030 at the
Petersen Automotive Museum
Your faithful blogger took a well-deserved "stay-cation" this past weekend, and checked out a couple of the local Tuckers in Southern California.  First up was Tucker No. 1030 at the Petersen Automotive Museum.  This black beauty has some interesting lettering, chrome trim and other doo-dads that I'd never seen on other Tuckers.  No. 1030 was purportedly Preston Tucker's personal car--which may explain a lot!  I wish that the lighting in the Petersen gallery was just a little brighter--a black car like this just kind of disappears and is tough to photograph!

Tucker No. 1040 at the
Nethercutt Museum
Next was Tucker No. 1040 at the Nethercutt Museum, which appears to be in good, un-restored condition.  I'm not sure that white is the most attractive color I've every seen on a Tucker.  The "Tucker" stencil--usually seen on the center of the rear bumper--was on the left front bumper of No. 1040--I couldn't get around the back to see if it was on the rear bumper as well (I hate those ropes!).  The "moon" wheel covers and red steel rims were also an interesting touch.

Keep watching our "Tucker Road Trip" posts in the future for more information about visiting these--and other--museums where Tuckers can be seen on public display.

(Post & photo credits: Kit Fox)

Friday, October 1, 2010

This Month in Tucker History

1946 - In October of 1946, the National Housing Agency (NHA) awarded the Lustron Corporation, an upstart company ready to build pre-fab steel housing, a lease on the gigantic Dodge Chicago plant. However, five weeks earlier, the War Assets Administration had signed an agreement with Preston Tucker awarding him a lease on the same factory. In response to protest by Tucker, the NHA's Office of Housing Expediter issued a press release stating that "Tucker had refused to allow Lustron joint occupancy and therefore the plant was awarded to Lustron." The press release also stated that "other options" had been explored, such as either company using other war surplus plants in Chicago or even the Curtiss-Wright Plant in Lockland, OH.

1947 - Nearly a year later, in September of 1947, the court ruled on behalf of the Tucker Corporation, stating that the agreement between Tucker Corporation and the War Assets Administration was, in fact, valid. In October of 1947, Tucker Corporation placed a winning bid with the War Assets Administration for the Granite City blast furnace at $2,751,000, only to have it awarded to lower bidder.

1948 - The nearly three-week-long testing of seven Tucker cars on the famed "Brickyard" of the Indy 500 Speedway was completed in October of 1948. One car, serial #1027, rolled over several times during a high speed crash on the track. The car appeared to be heavily damaged, yet the safety windshield had popped out just as planned and the driver, unhurt during the incident, was able to drive the car away.

1949 - October of 1949 proved to be one of the more difficult months for Preston Tucker and Tucker Corporation, as the fraud trial against Tucker and others began in Federal Court. By January of 1950, Preston Tucker and all the other defendants were acquitted on all charges, which included mail fraud, conspiracy, and several Securities and Exchange Commission infractions.

1950 - The final public auction of Tucker Corporation assets took place in October of 1950 at the Chicago Tucker plant grounds. Just days before, during the legal deposition of a news reporter, it was indicated that the SEC had illegally leaked information about Tucker investigation to the press prior to the SEC taking any action. The damage, however, had already been done, and the twenty-two Tucker cars on site, thirteen without transmissions, and the thirty-two Franklin Aircooled engines, were sold at auction. One car located in New York, a test chassis, several parts and various all non-Tucker company vehicles were sold by Samuel Winternitz & Company at a reported a $47,990.00--just pennies on the dollar.

1993 - It wasn't until October of 1993, following the very successful lobbying effort by the Tucker Automobile Club of America, that the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History, considered the "nation's museum," added a Tucker to its collection. The United States Marshals' Service donated Tucker #1039, which car had been seized in 1992 by the Drug Enforcement Administration following a narcotics investigation, to the museum rather than sending it to the auction block.

2000 - The 1988 Francis Ford Coppola/George Lucas film, Tucker: The Man and His Dream, was released on DVD in October of 2000. This much-anticipated version featured an original 1948 company promotional film and included several bonus features, such as interviews and a "making of" the film featurette.

(Post credit: Jay Follis)