There are a few things that we can count on doing when we visit my family in Indiana.
We always, always, always find our way to Lake Michigan and my favorite lighthouse. (I think I have about 148 million pics of this lighthouse. I can’t stop taking it’s picture.)
We always head to Phil and Sharon’s house to visit. (Phil knows exactly how to get my husband to come over for a visit – he invited Jon out to shoot blue rock this trip. Shotguns + blue rock = my husband’s perfect vacation.)
And we always go to Uncle Scott’s to check out the latest additions to his Nascar/bar collection, which is always impressive!
When we were in town for Christmas a few weeks ago, Jon and I did something that we’ve never done before. Mom told us that there was a special exhibit at the Studebaker National Museum in South Bend. South Bend was the home base for the Studebaker vehicles for the duration of the company’s existence. A new museum was built a couple of years ago and was said to be pretty impressive. We decided to check it out. And I’m really glad we did, because it was a great way to spend the afternoon.
The first floor of the museum is dedicated to the history of the Studebaker corporation. They have some of the earliest Studebaker wagons on display, and as you walk through the museum, you follow the history of the company from horse-drawn carriages to race cars. I love history, so it was really enjoyable to me. And Jon loves cars and mechanics, so it was also pretty enjoyable for him. It was a win-win afternoon!
When we arrived at the museum, we were greeted by Herbie. Hello, Herbie!
This car is a 1911 Electric Coupe. I loved it because it was like a little turn of the century compact car. I thought it was pretty stinking cute.
There were a number of Presidential carriages on show in the museum, including this one, which was the one that President Lincoln was riding in the night he was assassinated. I was in awe of this carriage. It had his initials on the doors of the buggy. Amazing.
I took a ton of pictures, but the light was pretty low in some places throughout the museum, and a lot of my pics were blurry (I realized once we left), so I didn’t get as many good shots as I’d have liked, but here are a couple of my favorites:
I love Studebaker’s hood ornaments. I could write a whole post on that subject alone.
In addition to Studebaker vehicles at the museum, a special exhibit called “Stars and the Cars” was being shown, which was a collection of cars that were either owned by famous people or were featured in movies.
The first one we saw was:
And who doesn’t love “The Muppet Movie?” This is the actual Studebaker used in the movie. To make it look like Fonzie was actually driving the car, they rigged it so that someone sat in the trunk to drive the car as they filmed. That’s what you see in the second picture.
There were lots of other cars in the exhibit, including cars that had been owned by Elton John, Roy Orbison, and KISS. It was a pretty fun afternoon. Not sure how long the “Stars” exhibit is going to be on display, but the Studebaker stuff was interesting on it’s own. If you’re ever in the neighborhood, you should check it out!