Steve Sherwood, a long-time volunteer at Union Station, was particularly proud this morning.
He’s a published photographer, he said!
And he is. Turns out, a new book just published by Christopher Cummings titled “Cadillac V-16s, Lost and Found” just hit the shelves. The author is a car nut who spent a lot of time chasing down the history of all the V-16 Cadillacs in the country, of which there are maybe 30.
One of them is in the collection of Ogden’s Union Station. It is one of nine cars given to Ogden by the family of Matt Browning after he died and the collection was broken up.
The car is drop dead gorgeous now, but the history dug up by Cummings says that it was not always so. It didn’t even start out as a V-16. When build in 1930 it was a mere V-8, engine No. 700072.
Steve said the interesting thing about it was that it was an overhead valve motor, common now but not then, when the flathead was the standard. According to Cummings the car was shipped in February of 1930 but was not the treasure item it is now. In fact, somewhere in there it was converted to a pickup truck, with the body sawed off leaving only the cowl, hood and radiator shell.
Why would someone do that? Well, it was the Depression. What was left of the car ended up in a salvage yard where, in 1961, a guy named Paul Schinnerer bought it for the princely sum of $300 and started the restoration, including the engine upgrade. Matt Browning bought it around 1980 and finishedthe work, and even drove the car.
This is all valuable history and a great addition to our knowledge here at Union Station. You can pick up a copy of the book from Amazon (click).