ANGOLA, IND. (WPTA21)-Angola, Indiana’s majestic Civil War monument has seen much in its hundred years of service. And now, it’s seen just about everything.
Take out the color and this could be Angola’s downtown traffic circle a hundred years ago, but it was a recent Friday morning when members of the International Pierce Arrow Society enjoying their annual get together paraded their American classics into 21 Country. Peter Fawcett drove his 1918 model 48 down from Canada.
“This car when it was bought new I’m gonna say was 8 to 9 thousand dollars in 1918,” he says. “So that’s probably I’m guessing it’s probably the price of two farms, maybe three.”
The Pierce Arrow Motor Company of Buffalo, New York built some of the finest automobiles in the world at a time when most Americans couldn’t afford to dream of one much less buy one. The advertising alone tells you the kind of clientele the company was targeting. The Pierce Arrow was expensive but you got what you paid for, a high end, meticulously built aluminum bodied car with innovations like headlamps molded into the fenders, Pierce Arrow did it first. Stu Blair drove his 1936 model 1601 up from Cincinnati.
“This car is 83 years old,” he says. “There is no place that I could not hop in this car and drive across country it is a reliable car its a comfortable car to go down the road.”
The Pierce Arrow Society has about a thousand members worldwide, folks from all walks of life who like history, like machines and appreciate quality. The club is visiting car museums in Auburn and South Bend this week, enjoying the scenery and each other’s company. And carrying on a decades old tradition of stewardship, keeping these cars on the road for future generations. Peter Fawcett inherited his car from his dad, and it will stay in the family when he’s gone.
“My oldest son, he’s pretty interested and I know he’ll look after it,” he says. “It’s like a love affair almost, it’s more than just a car it’s a friend, it’s like an old friend when you’re riding along in this you’re riding along with your buddy.”
Quality people driving quality classics, resting this day in the shadow of a quality town. Eric Olson reporting out in 21 Country.