A Still In Denver Edition: The Cussler Auto Museum, The American Gallery

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A Still In Denver Edition: The Cussler Auto Museum, The American Gallery

Dateline Denver, Colorado; August 1, 2011

Well, as the dateline suggests, this olelongrooffan is still out here in Murilee Martin’s hometown and I am doing my best not to steal any potential vehicles found on the street from him.  However, a couple weeks ago prior to getting started on the project for which I came to Denver, I got a chance to visit the Cussler Auto Museum along with the Rocky Mountain Street Rod shop and showroom.

If any of my fellow Hoons enjoyed the two above images, you’ll probably want to make the jump to see more of the same.


That hood ornament and wheel belong to this drop dead gorgeous Hudson convertible. It has a lusterous bronze finish that made me think of my fellow Hoons over at the Brown Car Appreciation Society on Facebook.

I was planning on running this post a couple weekends ago but the esteemed Mr. Brennan satisfied our Hoonworthy lust for oleragtops that weekend and I decided then to save these for another day.

And unlike those previously posted, most of the 50’s era rag tops in this museum have Continental kits.

For whatever reason, these era Buicks, instead of making this olelongrooffan shudder, just bring a smile to my face. I remember Murilee (or maybe Junkyard Life) found one of these in a junkyard a while back and I was glad to spot this one in pristine, museum show condition.

The Cussler Auto Musuem has two distinctly different galleries, at least with respect to the vehicles shown. The first gallery contains all sorts of 50’s era rides, including this pair of late 50’s Cadillacs.

Unmistakedly in my mind, these years represent the cutting edge of design for America’s premiere mass produced luxury car of the day. The previous years were merely building up to this design and the subsequent years mocked it. At least IMHO.

I mean dagmars!!

And this image could possibly have been a mystery car. Oh Wait! I forgot about tonyola for a moment.

But yeah, a four door hardtop with suicide doors and a stainless steel roof. Who could ask for anything more for 50’s American luxury?

And as the placard I captured in the following image states, this 57 Eldo Convertible cost more than a Rolls Royce.

And the front end images of those Continental kit possessing convertibles I had spotted while on the other side of the gallery.

This one is a slant eyed Continental similar to some offering by MOPAR in the later 50’s and early 60’s.

And I love this Mercury.

I mean, just check out what is happening there on the front grille of this beauty.

And it seems to me that for the longest time during this era, this “M” was seen on nearly every one of Mercury’s full size offerings.

Just so my fellow Hoons can appreciate them more, I went back around to gather some ass end images of each of these cars. The Mercury above.

This one is the Lincoln Continental and

this one is a Pontiac highlighted by Mr. Brennan the other weekend.

And who doesn’t love a Packard Caribbean? Cue the Jimmy Buffet soundtrack.


And to be fair, here are a couple lovely MOPAR offerings of the similar era.

This olelongrooffan mentioned a little earlier the Cussler Museum here in Denver has two distinct eras of vehicles in its museum. 

I covered the American era 50’s with this post.  My fellow Hoons will just have to check back shortly for some of the other cool stuff that was seen both in that room

and in the pre-WWII production era room filled with nearly everything but an “everyday” Model A”

By |2011-08-01T14:32:19+00:00August 1st, 2011|Hooniverse Goes To..., Modern Art Monday|17 Comments

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17 Comments

  1. P161911 August 1, 2011 at 2:53 pm - Reply

    I'm guessing that these are Clive's cars.
    I've probably contributed a tank's worth of gas or so over the years with book purchases.
    Looks like another one of those rich guy car collections that gets turned into a "museum" so it can be a tax write off. Only open on Mondays and Tuesdays? Tough luck if you have a 9-5 job or you come to town for a weekend. The Mircocar Museum around here has similar hours or worse.
    Wish I had enough cash and cars to do something similar.

    • Maxichamp August 1, 2011 at 4:16 pm - Reply

      Are you talking about the microcar museum in Georgia? How is that? I've always wanted to visit it.

      • P161911 August 1, 2011 at 5:30 pm - Reply

        That's the one. They are closed until summer 2012 for renovations. They would open up for car club events. But otherwise they were open something like every other Tuesday from 10am-3pm. I've never been there due to the crazy hours, just seen the webpage.

  2. RichardKopf August 1, 2011 at 2:57 pm - Reply

    Beautiful cars, it's a shame they can't go for a cruise.

  3. suju89 August 1, 2011 at 3:11 pm - Reply

    They really need to bring back continental kits. So classy.

  4. sportwagon August 1, 2011 at 3:26 pm - Reply

    Twin H-Power, Laddie!

  5. aastrovan August 1, 2011 at 4:04 pm - Reply

    Love those old heavy duty American cars,truly stylish and excessive and great.

  6. yellofury August 1, 2011 at 4:06 pm - Reply

    I love Clive's books. Are they in the same ilk as Stephen King or Dostoyevsky? No but they arent meant to be. I tell folks that they are like Hardy Boys for adults. Anyways he always stars one of his classic cars in his Dirk Pitt books and that pretty cool.
    too bad that its only open 2 days a week
    Cmon Mr Cussler!!

    • skitter August 1, 2011 at 4:22 pm - Reply

      Reading a novel, War and Peace, for example, is no catnap. Because a novel is so long, reading one is like being married forever to somebody nobody else knows or cares about. Definitely not refreshing!
      – Kurt Vonnegut

    • longrooffan August 1, 2011 at 7:14 pm - Reply

      Ironically, there are full time staff there five days a week but they are busy with the cars and have no time for visitors. I got lucky to have made it on a Tuesday IIRC.

  7. tonyola August 1, 2011 at 4:33 pm - Reply

    Actually, the blue '59 Continental is a Lincoln. FoMoCo dropped the pretense of Continental being a separate brand after 1958 and the Continentals officially became part of the Lincoln range for 1959.

    • longrooffan August 1, 2011 at 7:13 pm - Reply

      Thanks for the heads up on that. At the time I didn't recognize any Lincoln badging on it and was not real sure of the year of the "crossover" for Lincoln/Continental.

  8. 2 sexxy cute August 1, 2011 at 5:14 pm - Reply

    I'm sure you meant to say the dark blue BOP was the Buick recently profiled. The Pontiac version was a plain Jane, with comparatively little trim.
    <img src="http://www.thornburyclassics.com/graphics/cars/full/14_1.jpg"width=500&gt;

  9. dukeisduke August 1, 2011 at 9:14 pm - Reply

    The '57 Eldorado Brougham? Sweet.

  10. CptSevere August 1, 2011 at 9:33 pm - Reply

    I'm really impressed by all of these, especially the Eldo's.

  11. muthalovin August 2, 2011 at 5:32 am - Reply

    Very impressive. Cussler Auto Museum is going on the list of places to visit in Denver. Keep the sights from Denver coming, Longroof.

  12. LTDScott August 2, 2011 at 7:11 am - Reply

    I have personal experience working on the two slanty eye cars. My high school auto shop teacher restored classic cars on the side, and just after I graduated high school I helped him with his '59 Buick Lesabre convertible for a few weeks. He and I completely stripped down a '59 Buick sedan to be used as parts for the vert. Everything on that car was incredibly heavy!
    My former room-mate (and future groomsman) owns a '60 Lincoln Continental sedan that has been cut down into a perma-vertible. I got to drive it a couple of times, and my god it's a boat. You don't drive it, you guide it. Unfortunately unemployment has lead to some neglect of the car, but I believe he's trying to get it up and running again.

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