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Friday, March 16, 2018

Part of our Heritage: The R.E. Olds Museum

When I was a kid one of my grade school classmates and church friends was J. Woody. Doc (Armin) and Louise lived next door and I baby sat Davy (who I know is now David!) more than once. Bunny lived down the street and was a friend of my mom. What I didn't know as a child was that all of these people were descendants of one of our city's great pioneers, R.E. Olds, founder of REO Motorworks. And yes, if you ever drove an Oldsmobile, you have ties to Lansing, Michigan.


Last November attended an anniversary party at the R.E. Olds Museum here and it was a revelation in its wonderful display of classic automobiles from Oldsmobile and REO Motor Company as well as showing a slice of life for this power family in our community.


I should say that this is quite a small museum. Well, large enough to hold many cars, but we are talking one floor. They've done a magnificent job making the museum accessible to people, able to enjoy both the automotive history of the companies as well as the historical elements of family life.


This part of the post is all about the cars!


Imagine, taking a drive in this green beauty!


I have to admit, with its bright green, it was my favorite!


How many of us had a station wagon not unlike this one in our youth?


Nascar, anyone?


REO/Oldsmobile didn't just provide family cars. The police cars in Lansing were from this company.


So, too, were fire trucks in the day.


And a later day!


The museum showcases the functional "business" purposes of these cars well.


REO did farm trucks and tractors.


One could even be driven to their final reward (or the next-to-last stop) in one of their cars!


In some cases, there were child-size versions of the larger cars.


I loved the wonderful colors in the paints.


Have you noticed that most people don't have "happy colors" in their cars these days?


On road trips, I count "Happy Color" cars -- cars that are not silver, black, navy, brown or white. Depending on the day, I include maroon in there but fire-engine red is a happy color. Sometimes I can go a whole three hour trip and not even count ten! I might count this maroon, thought. it's so rich!


But I've only seen a KIA Soul this color.


So whether your tastes run from dignified black...


...to something bright...



A vehicle for your fancies...


...or a fancy pint-sized car...


This place had it all! (But wait! There's more -- coming soon!)

Sharing with:  Let's Keep in Touch at Let's Add Sprinkles  /   Share Your Cup  /   Pink Saturday  

43 comments:

David Gascoigne said...

Looks like they should bring out those green cars for St. Patrick’s Day tomorrow!

Valerie-Jael said...

What wonderful vehicles, that is a place I would enjoy visiting. Have a great weekend, hugs, Valerie

Sandi said...



That green car is very, very green.

And that station wagon... hahha! :)

bj said...

Olden cars were so beautiful back then...thanks for sharing

William Kendall said...

Beautiful cars!

Pam Richardson said...

Jeanie, I love seeing old cars! I agree, we don’t drive happy cars anymore. Growing up my daddy always drove an Olds. I learned to drive in a 69 Olds Cutlass! I won’t ever forget that car!

Nanci Thomas said...

What a wonderful collection of old cars. They certainly seemed to have been restored perfectly. I would love to ride around in one of these...I think it would be so much fun....

Susie said...

Jeanie, When you see the size of old cars and the size of those old one car garages, don't you wonder how they ever fit? I love seeing the colors and all that chrome.Blessings, xoxo, Susie

Joyful said...

Beautiful cars. I love all the red ones :-)

My name is Erika. said...

I'm with you about the green car. That would be a vehicle to flaunt. I see some hot ticket woman off to do something important (maybe even for herself) driving down Main St. It looks like they have a great collection at this museum and I am glad you shared it with us. happy weekend Jeanie. Hugs-erika

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

Sorry this is brief. I'm having keyboard problems. Wish I lived closer. I'd spend lots of time in that museum. I'm a huge car buff! I even owned an Olds once. It ran like a bat out of hades.

Julia - Vintage with Laces said...

Beautiful oldtimers! The green one is my favorite too. It looks so cheerful and makes me smile.
Have a happy weekend, Jeanie!
xo Julia

Olka said...

Wow I love these cars! They look awesome! I would like to try to drive a car like this one day. Maybe one day I'll have an opportunity, because for now none of my friends have the antique car.

roughterrain crane said...

All cars are still in good condition. Members in maintenance are excellent.

Joanne Huffman said...

I took my first driver's test in a 1959 Buick station wagon - it was like driving the
Queen Mary.

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Oh, the older the better. Give me the carriage any day!

Carol @Comfort Spring Station said...

I have family in Greater Detroit area and have visited several car museums. This one looks fabulous. How wonderful to grow up in the midst of history.

Tristan Robin Blakeman said...

First, I love/want/need/must have that royal coach! LOL It's really a coach and not a car, right?! What fun!

What a shame that cars don't have any style or panache any longer. These are beauties - but I can remember even from my childhood in the late '50's and early '60's, the great style my Dad's Thunderbird convertible had! Now, all cars look alike - heck, even a Rolls Bentley doesn't look THAT much different from a Buick! LOL

That green color is also available from Ford - it's called "Twisted Lime" and it's the color of our winter rat which we got a couple years ago. We went to buy one model - but actually changed our entire criterion in order to drive off the lot in this Twisted Lime beauty!

Thanks for the tour! Have a great weekend!

The French Hutch said...

That is a great way to spend time and I have a husband, son and grandson I’d have a hard time convincing to leave. Jeanie, I agree, so many pretty colors. LOL, you brought up memories for me because my family did have Oldsmobiles........Happy St. Patrick’s Day.

Sami said...

What a beautiful collection of vintage cars. Love their bright colours :)
Have a wonderful weekend Jeanie.

Preppy Empty Nester said...

My Mister would be in hog heaven!!! He would never want to leave!! Have a great week!

Arti said...

So interesting! Even more valuable a museum as we're heading into electric cars and even cars without drivers. Anyway, yes, I have a connection to Lansing ... used to drive a Delta 88 when my son was a baby, good size to put in car seat, easy to get in and out. :)

Victoria Zigler said...

That must be an interesting place to visit. Also, cool you have such connections to the family.

Even though she has a new model of car, my Mam has a fun coloured car... It's purple. Well, officially blackcurrent - according to the car's paperwork - but purple is still cool, and still makes a nice change from the usual colour range even I know you see everywhere. She nearly got a pink one, but the car she wanted didn't come in pink.

DMS said...

Wow! Looking at these pictures was amazing. I am sure seeing it in person is even more fascinating. Thanks for sharing! :)
~Jess

BB said...

That green one is a beauty. My favorite is the first fire truck. I love that cherry red.

Pam Jackson said...

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the old cars! Esp liking that green! So cool. Thanks for sharing these with us. I would have loved to see all these.

Jann Olson said...

Wow, what a bunch of beautiful cars! That green one really would be a show stopper driving down the road. I love that you have a connection with the family!
hugs,
Jann

thepaintedapron.com said...

How fun Jeanie! I am crazy about old cars! Growing up my Dad had a 1936 Ford that he loved to tinker with, it even had side curtains instead of windows! My husband once bought an old corvette and fixed it up, but he eventually sold it as babies came along and his "hobby" became impractical.
I loved seeing all these vintage OLDs! The colors are beautiful!
Jenna

Sandra Cox said...

Oh what fun. All kinds. All colors.

Carola Bartz said...

I'm not really into cars - for me it's a tool that should get you from A to B and back safely and in a timely manner. Wonderful if they don't use that much gas either. And I agree with you that many cars nowadays just have boring neutral colors (just like homes...). Unfortunately we can't choose much of the color of our car since we love to drive a stick and there's not much choice. However, with our current car (and "current" for us means at least 10 years) we were lucky and got a real sassy red one.

Kitty said...

We actually had one of those station wagons way back when! Love your post. I did not know there was an Olds museum in Lansing, just the Ford one outside Detroit!

Lynne said...

Looks like a fun OLDS visit . . .
I’d love a ride in that Happy Green . . .

Jennifer Richardson said...

The first car my husband and I bought together was a shiny pale green Olds:) Big ole car:) So we have ties to Lansing:)

I love the way you celebrate life and living:) Always you inspire.

-Jennifer

Sandra Cox said...

I just can't quite picture the 'Nascar' in the races, can you? :)
Have a pleasant, productive week, Jeanie.

Marilyn Miller said...

I would enjoy this museum. I love old cars. I guess my car is happy, as it is red. My favorite of the ones you showed was the one with the wreath on the front. How cute is that. Rick told me he could give me a tour of auto parts store if I visited Lansing. My grandfather use to travel to Michigan every time he bought a new Pontiac. Not sure which town made Pontiac's, but he loved them.

Tracy said...

WOW... this was sooo much FUN, Jeanie! I liked that Olds farm truck dressed up for Christmas. :) Even child-size versions, equally impressive as the grown-up versions! And Cinderella's carriage too??!! So interesting to see the colors...and all the beautiful chrome-work. So much of cars these days is plastic... LOL! Can't wait to see what you have lined up for us to see next...Happy week, my friend! ((HUGS))

shoreacres said...

My Dad bought Oldsmobiles, and my mother followed in his footsteps. The one car she bought "on her own" after his death was an Olds, and we had it until I sold it to buy Princess. You're right about the colors, too. Around here, it's mostly white, silver, and ivory-to-beige, but that's partly because of the heat. Paints are better now, but the lighter colors help to keep the interiors at least a few degrees cooler -- even though it doesn't always seem so!

Jenny Woolf said...

Those are fine cars! I always fall in love with the green ones. I wish it was possible to get a new green car these days. It seems that you have to get the paintwork on special order if you want green.... never worth the money for us but perhaps one day fashions will change....

Polly said...

Oh wow, all those beautiful gleaming chrome cars and trucks, they are all beauties. I like the models as well. What a great museum. The green one is my favourite too :-)

Sketchbook Wandering said...

Wow! I'll be sharing this post with my favorite Car Guy! You do go to a lot of interesting and fun places!

csuhpat1 said...

Wow, what a super cool museum to go to. I would love it there. Thanks for sharing this wonderful place.

Katie Mansfield said...

That looks like so much fun. I love the green one too. Thanks for linking up to Keep In Touch.

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

I will have to show this post to Phil. He loves cars, especially collector items. I love all the bright colors, especially the bright red. My first car was cherry red and I loved it. Since then I have had silver and gray. Love the idea of counting fun-colored cars!

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