Pierce-Arrow Society Annual Meet 

Meet Logo
Searching for Lincoln
Pierce-Arrow Society 48th Annual Meet
Springfield, Illinois
July 13-17, 2005
Submitted By David E. Tyminski

The Pierce-Arrow Society's 2005 Annual Meet was held July 12 – 17th in Springfield, Illinois. In addition to enjoying our Pierce-Arrow automobiles, their driving manners and abilities, there was an additional focus on Abraham Lincoln’s heritage. Mr. Lincoln spent the majority of his adult life in Springfield.

On Wednesday July 13, there was an opportunity to shake down the Pierces and explore country roads including Route 66 traveling to Decatur, Illinois, where we visited the James Millikin Homestead Museum. After lunch there were visits to an interesting bookseller and the Depot Antique Mall. A welcoming gathering occurred during the evening to refresh friendships and make introductions to those with green ribbons, identifying them as attending their first PAS Annual Meet.

On Thursday, the Search for Lincoln began with a tour through another Buffalo (Pierce-Arrows were manufactured in Buffalo, New York) and to the east to Mount Pulaski. The courthouse located here, built in 1847, is one of two surviving buildings where Abraham Lincoln practiced law on the 8th Judicial Circuit.

The town rolled out the red carpet for us and reserved special parking for the Pierce-Arrows around the courthouse square while we were there. Many of the local people personally thanked us for visiting the town and displaying our Pierce-Arrows.

We stopped for coffee and antiques in Elkhart, Illinois, and many stopped by the Pig Hip Restaurant Museum which was an original Route 66 restaurant beginning in the 1930’s. After lunch, we visited New Salem State Park, a reconstruction of a rural village where Lincoln lived from 1831 to 1837 with buildings representing those of Mr. Lincoln’s youth and mercantile businesses. The tour returned to downtown Springfield for a staged drive by shooting at Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln’s home with the Pierce-Arrows and our finest photographic equipment. After returning to the hotel, many ladies participated in a demonstration and discussion on Developing the Style in clothing appropriate for the vintage auto. Suggestions were made on transforming clothing and accessories into the clothing styles of years gone by. Over 60 people were in attendance.

Friday, we visited the many and varied sites in downtown Springfield. The Old State Capitol served as the Illinois statehouse from 1839 to 1876, with its Greek Revival architecture with a perfectly balanced design. All the major executive, legislative, and judicial functions of state government were housed here. Both houses of the General Assembly met here as did the Illinois Supreme Court. It also housed one of the state’s finest law libraries. Our Search for Lincoln included the description of the emergence of the Republican party and Mr. Lincoln’s senatorial campaign that ultimately led to a presidential nomination and election. We were told about the debates with Stephen Douglas and Mr. Lincoln’s speeches delivered with skill and passion. This building’s final link with Abraham Lincoln was forged after his assassination. On May 3 and 4, 1865, his body lay in an open casket within a elaborate velvet-covered catafalque in Representatives Hall, as a crowd estimated at 75,000 filed past to pay their respects. We also visited the Lincoln family tomb in Oak Ridge Cemetery and the recently opened Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum. Through numerous visual aids, descriptions, political cartoons and holograms, we could see images of Mr. Lincoln and the anguish and memories of the separation of the United States that erupted into the Civil War. Our driving tour continued to the Rees Memorial Carillon in Washington Park where we heard the carillon played in the early afternoon. Next we ventured out into the country to find the Sugar Creek Covered Bridge in Chatham. Our last stop was at Jim Timberlake’s home on Lake Springfield to enjoy tea and ice cream and observe his wonderful car collection. A production Silver Arrow that was brought in just for the occasion. During the evening, there was an exchange of parts and pieces in a well attended flea market.

Saturday, we were up early to arrange the display of cars in a shaded area of Lincoln Park, just west of the Illinois fairgrounds and 15 minutes from the Crowne Plaza Hotel. This was part of my job as a member of the organizing meet committee. Bill Morris and I arranged spaces with room around each of the 58 Pierce-Arrows and 8 bicycles. The cars ranged from the earliest, a 1911 Model 48-SS touring to several 1936's represented by several body styles: sedan, club sedan, limousine, town car (Brunn Metropolitan Town Brougham) and phaeton. We were able to view a 1934 production Silver Arrow and a 1934 Model 836A Henny Arrowline hearse. I had a ride on the articulating casket platform in back of the hearse to fulfill a PAS driving commitment for each vehicle judged. There are only two seats in the hearse. What a ride!

At 10:30am, with all the cars on the show field, Mr. Lincoln arrived at the show in the rumble seat of a 1929 Model 133 roadster wearing his period dress with gloves, cane and stovepipe hat. Mr. Lincoln visited with many meet participants. Acting as an interpreter in the flesh, Mr. Lincoln acted with the wit, wisdom and some of the characteristics that are associated with this man.

At the technical session, Bill Morris demonstrated a method to synchronize a dual point distributor and Rick Horne explained the terminology related to engine balancing. At the end of a wonderful celebration of the Pierce-Arrow Motor Car, we were treated to more of Abe’s humor at the Awards Banquet.

We enjoyed the company, the pleasant surroundings, the well planned tours, and our Search for Lincoln during the PAS Annual Meet. If you enjoyed the 2005 Annual Meet with us, or especially if you missed it, start making plans to attend next year's 49th Annual PAS Meet in Redmond, Oregon, August 1-6, 2006.

48th Annual Meet Award Winners 

Click on pictures for a larger view
Bernard J. Weis Trophy
Most Authentic Restoration
Bernard J. Weis Trophy
1936 Model 1601 Metro Town Brougham
Robert & Alice Sands
New York
R. Vale Faro Trophy
Most Original Pierce-Arrow
R. Vale Faro Trophy
1933 Model 836 Club Brougham
Fred & Carol Ellenberger
Illinois
Henry E. & Pauline S. Becker Trophy
Longest Distance Pierce-Arrow Driven to Meet
Trophy
1916 38-C-4 5-Pass. Touring
Mike Maloney
Minnetonka, Minnesota
Trophy
1930 Model C Sedan
Tony & Pat Doughty
Walker, Minnesota
Otto Klausmeyer Distinguished Service Award
Distinguished Service to the Pierce-Arrow Society
Otto Klausmeyer Distinguished Service Award
Fay Butler
Bicycle Class
Most Original Bicycle
1897
Lady's Chain Drive
Henry & Joan May
Connecticut
1st
1925
Man's Racer
Gene & Ruth Reeves
Georgia
1st
1900
Lady's Shaft Drive
Jerry Plachecki
Minnesota
1st
1902
Man's Chain Drive
Jerry Plachecki
Minnesota
Class 1 1901 - 1928 (Except Series 80/
1st
1923 Series 33
7-Pass. Sedan
John & Mary Porbeck
Missouri
1st
1911 48-SS
7-Pass. Touring
Robert & Betty Reenders
Michigan
1st
1923 Series 33
Runabout
David & Jane Barclay
Illinois
Class 2 1925 - 1928 Series 80 & 81
1st
1925 Series 80
Runabout
Ron & Dawn Sautter
Florida
1st
1926 Series 80
Judkins Coupe
Michael Bortoli
Illinois
1st
1928 Series 81
5-Pass. Sedan
Bob & Kathy Kanauer
New York
Class 3 1929 - 1931
1st
1931 Model 43
7-Pass. Sedan
Chris & Delphine Diekman
Iowa
1st
1930 Model B
Club Sedan
Manford & Frances Stewart
Indiana
1st
1930 Model B
Roadster
George & Carol Teebay
California
Class 4 1932 - 1933
1st
1933 Model 1236
Club Sedan
Thomas & Deborah Brumley
Ohio
1st
1932 Model 54
7-Pass. Touring
Gene & Ruth Reeves
Georgia
1st
1932 Model 54
Club Brougham
Fred & Rosemary Cleaver
Michigan
Class 5 1934 - 1938
1st
1935 Model 1245
Convertible Coupe
Ralph Schmidt
Ohio
1st
1936 Model 1602
Club Sedan
John Steckbeck
Indiana
1st
1934 Model 836A
Henney Arrowline Hearse
Michael Riefer
Missouri