Trip to the Classic Auto Mall

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A longtime friend contacted me recently and asked if I wanted to go on an adventure.  That adventure? An excursion to the Classic Auto Mall in Morgantown, PA.  I only recently heard of the place when two customers told me about their visit.  They described an old mall converted to a museum and sales facility.  They also said the massive collection was a bit overwhelming. This meant I needed to see it!

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The low rent district. Higher end vehicles were up front.

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John, his wife Diane, and I met in Gettysburg and rode up together, chatting vintage cars, catching up, me spilling coffee all over the place.  Maybe an hour or so later we arrived.  The mall is your typical smaller 1980s indoor mall.  Opened in 1985 it survived until 2011.  Sometime after that the antique auto mall took over.  Attached at one end of the mall is a recently renovated Holiday Inn.


1909 Dorris pickup.  Dorris vehicles were made in St. Louis, MO from 1907 to 1926.  This may be the only assembled one in existence.


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1923 Chevrolet Weidman Motor Home.  Obviously an unrestored example, I was really excited to see this.

Great video of a restored example.


The Classic Auto Mall houses a massive barn find collection.  These vehicles are in areas you can walk through, and displayed behind store windows as well.  There are many rarities, some of my favorites hi-lighted through this article.

Classic Auto Mall is also a place where you can sell your own antique car.  These are consignments and a large portion of what you see throughout the mall are consignment vehicles.  This means there is a constantly shifting collection to visit.  As for the prices? There were a handful of vehicles priced at market value, but as with many online sellers, a high proportion of the prices were far beyond the market value.  A Willys CJ2A that would maybe sell for $7,500.00 was listed at almost $16,000.00  A rusty VW Beetle that would normally sell for maybe $2,500.00 was listed for around $9,000.00  Some vehicles were fairly priced.  I am unsure if this is pricing by the auto mall, or just unrealistic sellers.


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The barnfind collection goes on and on.  I would say the barnfinds were my favorite part of the collection.  Pierce Arrows, Hudsons, Grahams and other rarely seen early marques.

The Classic Auto Mall is free to visit, and definitely worth the trip.  Staff were friendly and helpful.  The parking lot is massive and they do offer rental rates for hosting events in or outdoors.

For more information on the mall, visit their website at: www.ClassicAutoMall.com

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Meet Mabel

I love barn finds, I think most car buffs do.  Nowadays we see alot of garage and self storage finds.  We rarely get to breathe in that musty air and hay and brush dust off a vehicle that has sat for twenty or more years.

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A fellow, Brian, contacted me a while back in search of a Willys truck.  He and I looked at an array of trucks posted on ewillys.com. There was a variety available around the country.  Eventually we found a nice restored truck and he decided to buy it.  However he decided that it was not the right time for a truck and we decided to keep looking.  The key phrase was that we,” wait for something closer to the shop.” Insert Mabel.

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I kept an eye online for trucks more local, but honestly these vehicles show up when they want to be found, especially the right ones.  A friend and neighbor took a copy of my card one day and mentioned that a friend of his had a Willys truck he wanted to sell and that it was sitting in a barn.

A week or so later I heard from Mr. Gross, we set a time for me to go and see the truck.  Mr. Gross happens to live about two miles from my house, how much closer could we ask for?

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When we met up I found that Mr. Gross and I had alot to talk about.  I teach and he is a retired teacher.  We both love to teach kids and adults to work with their hands.  As we chatted I looked over the truck (Mabel is a ’57 Willys) and began to realize that this was the one for my customer.  I took photos and immediately went home to email Brian about what I hoped was his new truck.

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Brian agreed that this was the one, and as you can see by the above photo, we moved forward with the purchase.  Mabel was in the Gross family since the 1970s.  The truck worked on their farm in Taneytown, then moved down closer to Westminster.  Mabel sat for years as a father/son project that never fully moved on.  With Mr. Gross’s son now having a master’s degree, he decided it was time to move the truck on.

IMAG0764Mabel is now at our shop awaiting her restoration and then a move to the midwest.  A true barnfind, and another Willys truck to bring back to the road.