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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, last week I ran a title search on my car here in Kentucky...got the results yesterday and it was useless. All it showed was the guy we bought the car from in the mid 80's and had a post it note attached that read, "All records have been destroyed".
A few years ago I had done a little bit or research and had talked to the guy who owned the car 2 owners back. He gave me that name of the guy he got it from in 1973. He also told me that he doubted I would ever find that guy. I did a little bit of looking but was never able to find out anything about him...all I had was his name and that he had owned a bodyshop or two through the years.
Just more recently I again became interested in tyring to find some background information on the car, hence the reason for doing the title search, but when it came up as useless, I started focusing on the last owners name I had. I wasn't able to find any info on him, so I was about ready to give up.
I work at a local college here in town. I noticed that my mystery owner and one of our maintenace guys had a similar last name...I told the guy about the person I was trying to find and he said it was his brother! Turns out the guy that gave me his name had added an "s" on it...and his brother told me people do that all the time. He gave me his brother's phone number and said he would probably be glad to talk to me.
Called him tonight, had a short conversation. He told me what he knew about the car and gave me the guys name he had purchased it from. Looked his number up and gave him a call. He was very excited to tell me about the car...he drove it all through highschool and raced it all the time. He told me stories about how the 302 would raise the front wheels off the ground. He had purchased it 72 from the local dealership used. He said it was all original at the time except for headers and aluminum slot wheels. He also regretted getting rid of it and told me if I ever wanted to sell it to let him know. Also, he said he paid $1175 for it!
Well, he gave me the number of the salesman he bought it from so I called him. He said he remembered the car, but had no idea where they had got it from. He assumed it had come from another local lot in town. I hit a dead end. As a last ditch effort, I called one of the older guys in town associated with the dealership...his dad had owned it, but it has been closed for probably 20 years now. He told me they had destroyed all the records:(
It was fun while it lasted, but I guess that's it...
 

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If it were me .. just because it would be cool... I would go see the guy and video tape an iterview with him. Set up a camera on a tri pod , have a beer and talk it over:) Did you ask if he had any old pictures of the car? Or if his parents had any. I was surprise how many photos my mother had of me and my old cars.
 

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Ive been fortunate with finding past owners on a few cars. Every one of them has been excited to hear about their old car and love to tell stories they have.

With my GTO, I have every piece of paperwork you could ask for, from the trade-in and dealer inspection paper to repair reciepts. The original owner of the car has driven the car since it was finished. Priceless. I have also talked with several other past owners of the car. Unfortunately, I have yet to find the link in which the original engine left it. :sad:

With a recent car I built for a client of mine, I found (by complete accident, still amazes me) a past owner of the car here on TC. Through him, many of the other past owners of the car were contacted, and all of them have seen the car now that it's finished. Like your story Jason, this 302 was also pulling the front wheels off the ground :thumbsup:

It can be difficult to find past/original owners, and sometimes by accident. Either way, its always cool to reunite the two.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
He said one of his friends put a coke can in front of the wheels...his friend stood beside the car and watched while he popped the clutch and hopped over the can! It's just funny to me they were doing stuff like that! He was very excited to talk to me about it and said if I ever wanna sell it to let him know. Also, he said he would like to see the car and I told him anytime he wanted to...just give me a call. I told him he would probably be shocked since I have it torn down at the momment, but hopefully I will start making positive progress this year (progress that actually looks like something:)

One thing that is weird...my car has a - - paint code, but when he bought it in 72 off the lot here in town, it was tuxedo black with white stripes, but he said the paint was in very bad shape, already faded very badly. I wonder if the first owner added the stripes, or if the dealership added them when it was new? I know the car was black, I have found it all over under pieces of trim and under the undercoating in the rear wheelwells. I may never know the story on it.
 

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That was a very interesting story. It's good that the owner had such clear memories and was willing to share all of them with you. There are so many people out there "like those cars in barns guys" that would have been real jerks about the whole thing and wouldn't have wanted to even talk over the phone with you let alone meet you in person.


If I ever decided to trace my cars history, I doubt if any information I found would be as exciting as yours. All I know is that Mines started out as an inline six grocery getter without a single high performance part on it anywhere. (I got this info from tracing the VIN numbers). When I bought it off the lot it had a tired and beat up small block 305 in it with a half dead TH350 tranny attached. A lot of work has gone into it since then, but other that what I can draw from the VIN#'s, I know nothing else about her past at all :(
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Garfield,

If you were able to somehow find out the history, it really doesn't even have to be anything exciting to be interesting. If I were you I would enjoy finding out why someone bought one of those cars with a 6 cylinder, and at what point it got changed to a 305 and why. It could have been an older lady that just liked the looks of it and wanted a grocery getter, a girl that didn't care about a high performance engine, or just a guy that was frugal and just scraped up enough cash to buy a new car but couldn't afford a lot of options...either way it makes for an interesting story.
I probably could have made my story a little easier to follow by including names, but I intentionally thought it was a good idea to leave thier names out. I have one last trick to try before I give up...gonna check on that today...if I make any progress I will let everyone know.
 

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That's a great story. It's always interesting to find out where the car has been and who cared for (or neglected/abused it).
I bought mine from the original owner when I was in high school. It was sold by an old lady, blind in one eye (the dents to the quarters and fenders showed her vision limitations). I immediately parked the car & restored it. Took about 2 years for me to restore it & I took it to her house to show her. At the door I found out that she had passed away in that time but her daughter & husband were crying when I showed the car. They said when it came time to sell the car, she wanted it to have a "good home" and she sold me the car for less than what she was asking even though she was offered more than her asking price by others calling after me. She knew it was my first car & wanted me to have it. I'll always remember the way it made me feel and kindness of that lady to pass the car on to me. She owned it for 17 years and I've had it for the past 20.
 
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