Sad: forgotten, rotting car museum in Central Oregon

Discussion in 'General Automotive Discussion' started by Jedi, Sep 11, 2011.

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  1. Jedi

    Jedi Two Time F1 World Champ
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    #1 Jedi, Sep 11, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
    I first visited this car museum in the early 1970s, when it was new. Nothing
    at all exotic - just old American cars. Back then, it was pristine inside and every
    car sparkled and shined. But over the years, fewer people came and the little
    town slowly died off and it just fell into neglect. I last visited in 2002, and it
    was very sad then.

    But over this last week I stopped in again, and it's just really sad to see all these
    cars rotting like this. Virtually all the emblems and hood ornaments have now been
    pilfered, along with trim parts and other bits. A fence was put up inside years ago
    apparently to slow the theft of bits, but it's been pulled down in places and folks
    just keep slowly stripping the cars.

    I have no idea who owns them or if they are for sale - but sure would be nice
    to see someone stop in to Shaniko, Oregon to suss all that out and rescue
    these nice old American cars from their ultimate destruction when the old barn
    they are in finally collapses...

    Just thought I'd share the pix...

    Jedi
    museum 1.jpg
    museum 2.jpg
    museum 3.jpg
    museum 4.jpg
    museum 5.jpg
    museum 6.jpg
    museum 7.jpg
     
  2. TexasF355F1

    TexasF355F1 Two Time F1 World Champ
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    That's really sad.

    I'm sure its an interesting story of how it all went down hill, and why the cars have been left to rot.
     
  3. JeremyJon

    JeremyJon F1 Veteran

    Jul 28, 2010
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    wow...amazingly sad to see .....i know a couple of people that would come take them as rescues asap ......i wonder if there is some legal hurdle to them having been claimed/rescued??
     
  4. Jedi

    Jedi Two Time F1 World Champ
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    I'm sure they're not "abandoned" in the normal sense. There are only 28 residents
    of Shaniko, Oregon and I'm sure one of those folks owns the barn, land & cars.
    Shanko used to be a tourist stop on Hwy. 97, which goes right by the town. The
    old 1906 buildings were nice shops and cafes, and it cost a few bucks to enter
    the car museum. But over the years, the shops all closed and fell into severe
    disrepair, and the last real draw, the hotel/cafe shuttered its doors in 2008. So
    it's reverted to being a real ghost town again... I'm sure one day the barn will
    just collapse on the cars and that'll be the end of it. If the owner hasn't sold off
    by now, I doubt he ever will.

    Jedi
     
  5. UroTrash

    UroTrash Three Time F1 World Champ
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    Rust to dust.

    Dust to dust.

    An allegory for our very beings.

    Or sumpthin.
     
  6. Jedi

    Jedi Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Sumpthin like that

    :)

    Jedi
     
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  8. tuttavelocita

    tuttavelocita Formula 3

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    Im going to pass this on to my friends dad who collects tons of american cars (portland native also) and see if he's interested in pursuing saving these cars, won't be too hard finding the owner/s.
     
  9. Jedi

    Jedi Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Keep us posted. No, it should be fairly easy to find the owner. However, I
    strongly suspect if he hasn't sold before, when the cars had a lot more value,
    he's not selling now either. But ya never know

    Jedi
     
  10. tuttavelocita

    tuttavelocita Formula 3

    Aug 26, 2007
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    It'd be a shame the cars are just going to get gutted and it might be one of those deals that he just wants out of it, Im guessing the collection must of belonged to a patriarch of a family and the kids inherited all the cars after his death and this is the end result. Either them holding onto the legacy of their father/grandfather or inability to come to a unanimous decision on what to do with the collection.
     
  11. kali

    kali Formula Junior

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    What a shame, I'm sure there's plenty of folks who would love and cherish one of those.
     
  12. badges2

    badges2 Formula 3

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    #11 badges2, Sep 24, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
    That story sounds familiar.....
    Radiator-Springs-disney-pixar-cars-8366041-600-323.jpg
     
  13. Bxtech

    Bxtech Formula Junior

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    Wow........that is sad! I hope there's a happy ending to this story. There are enthusiasts all over just aching to restore those cars!
     
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  15. jefffromcanada

    jefffromcanada Formula Junior
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    I may be the only one....but in all honesty. I would have more interest in walking around that "museum" as it sits now than if all the cars were restored and sitting on a black and white checkered floor.
     
  16. Jedi

    Jedi Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Well, there isn't much "walking around" room actually. It's filled with clutter, and
    some of the cars are almost touching. I looks like the roof leaks, it's unheated and
    the windows are gone. So if you want to see it, you should plan to hit Shaniko
    in the next couple years - I have a feeling it's really on its last legs at this point.
    Oh, and bring a flash light - there are no working lights inside.

    But it is interesting to see it "in situ" like this, I agree.

    Jedi
     
  17. JeremyJon

    JeremyJon F1 Veteran

    Jul 28, 2010
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    Jedi, when you're there next (if so?) or even in contact someway? perhaps let them know about the reynold-museum up here.....they are very active in retreiving and restoring of significant automobiles

    my late uncle was involved with them, travelling to retrieve some cars himself (he had/restored several model T and model A fords, and various vintage tractors)

    anyone travelling up this way i can suggest a visit, they have a large collection...really something i enjoyed IMO

    http://www.history.alberta.ca/reynolds/default.aspx

     
  18. Justin@Jalopnik

    Aug 27, 2010
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    Jedi, can you email me? I have a query for you. Justin at jalopnik dot com.
     
  19. texasmr2

    texasmr2 F1 World Champ
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    Barn finds such as that make me randy. My point being that such a collection regardless of make/model/year/era etc etc connects us all and I would have been drooling just as much at 10yr's old as I am now at 47.

    Thanks for sharing.
     
  20. Jedi

    Jedi Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Feel free to send me a PM

    Jedi
     
  21. Jedi

    Jedi Two Time F1 World Champ
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    You're welcome. But technically, it's not a "barn find" - it's a very neglected car
    museum that happens to be in a barn. These cars I'm sure are not abandoned
    in the "barn find" sense... I'm sure they're very much known to their owner who
    makes no effort or expense to keep them from rotting. The museum is right next
    to Highway 97 (a very main drag!) in central Oregon - with a zillion cars driving
    by every day. All he'd have to do is put out a "for sale" sign and they'd be gone
    by the weekend. But for whatever reason, he chooses not to.

    The location is NOT "secret" (as in classic barn find scenarios). Just drive into
    Shaniko Oregon sometime and you'll see them all right there, free to wander
    about inside - no one will bother you.

    So no, this is not a "barn find" case

    Jedi
     
  22. texasmr2

    texasmr2 F1 World Champ
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    Pardon my reference I got carried away and all foggy lol. Thanks for sharing.
     
  23. Jedi

    Jedi Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Oh, no problem.... I think it would be way cool for someone here to go
    to Shaniko, locate the owner(s), and make an offer on the lot....

    :)

    Jedi
     
  24. carguyjohn350

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  25. nthfinity

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  26. carguyjohn350

    carguyjohn350 Formula 3
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    Good to here. I like Jalopnik. :)
     
  27. Jedi

    Jedi Two Time F1 World Champ
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    My photos... yes, used with permission... no, I declined credit on Jalopnik by name.
    I didn't write the article, but I did provide the details I know to Justin at Jalopnik,
    and I feel the article is very well done. He was VERY cool to work with and very
    polite and respectful in every way. Kudos to them for being so professional.

    I'm proud to have my pix used there - and that the article is accurate in the details.

    No "rip off" - I gave 100% permission for this.

    Jedi (Bad Jew me, posting on Rosh Ha Shana :p:p)

    Jedi
     
  28. pearsonhaus

    pearsonhaus Formula 3

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    Sad to see that "history" not being protected. Lots of folks would love to have the chance to restore and care for those vehicles.......
     
  29. GIOTTO

    GIOTTO Formula 3
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    I just discovered this thread. Any news about the cars? Thank you.
     

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