Model T Museum With Dad

A highlight of last year’s Christmas vacation was a stop at the Model T Museum in Richmond, Indiana. While I know little about cars and nothing about the Model T, I had a fantastic time touring the museum and learning from a great tour guide. The entire time, I kept thinking about how much my dad would love it there.

In my lifetime, I went places with both my parents or with my mother but rarely just with my dad. So it’s a treat to spend a day just the two of us. We set out early, zig zagging through small towns and then across the National Road into Richmond. Neither of us enjoy highways and we weren’t on any kind of schedule so it was fun wandering down roads we hadn’t seen before.

The museum didn’t disappoint. I enjoyed the tour again and he loved it, getting more out of it than I ever will. He has many of the tools and parts they’re displaying, jumbled into his own random collection of stuff. Good luck finding any of it. He’s sort of a pack rat and, while no one else can ever find anything, he knows exactly what he has.

The museum tells the story of the Model T in the context of what was happening in the country and world. It’s very nicely done and I would recommend it if you get a chance.

We also stopped at a big antique mall near Dayton that I’ll tell you about another day.

It was a good day and I’m glad we got to enjoy it together. Solo adventures are fun but it’s even better with someone you know will enjoy it.

Harry Ferguson and the Weirdness I Photograph

The people in my life probably think I’m nuts when I get excited about some of the things I photograph. For example, check out this old Harry Ferguson tractor in my cousin’s driveway.

I had no camera or phone with me so I had to borrow a phone to snap these pictures.

Yes, it sounds a smidge nuts.

I know you have a burning desire to know who this Harry Ferguson fellow was. He was an Irish born British mechanic and inventor who evidently played a major role in the development of the modern farm tractor.

He also developed a plow that could be attached to a Model T car, a real game changer for farmers who needed a car as well as an ability to plow- both expensive investments in a day before everyone lived on credit.

Funny – when I toured the Model T Museum in Richmond, Indiana during my National Road adventure last year, I learned a little about this topic. Oh… you haven’t read my account of the Model T Museum tour? Well, you need to so click this link as soon as you’re done reading this story!

A quick Google search tells me that he also developed the first four wheel drive Formula One car AND was the first person in Ireland to build and fly his own airplane.

And yes, he is THAT Ferguson – his name lives on today in the Massey Ferguson Company.

So back to my brand of crazy.

I just loved old cars, trucks, tractors and really any kind of large equipment or vehicle that has interesting lines or patina.

Bonus points for neat gauges and cool wheels!

One of these days someone will find me wandering through a junk yard, snapping photos of rusty old car taillights and gas gauges like a woman possessed.

For now though it’s just a cute little quirk….

Carriage Shop

You don’t have to travel very far on the National Road in Indiana to see some interesting things. Route 40 is four lane most of the way and cuts through farm country and small towns. You’ll see a lot of kitsch along the way and there are tons of antiques stores as the eastern section of this route had been branded “Antique Alley.”

This is one of many neat things I pulled over to take pictures of during my last trip through. It’s right along the highway in a cute town called Dublin.

Here’s a question – which do you prefer- color or black and white?

Lynn’s Soda Fountain: A National Road Landmark

On Friday I promised to take you on an adventure to an old fashioned soda fountain. This nasty winter weekend seems like a good time to enjoy more pleasant memories!

When I set out on my post Christmas National Road Adventure, I had few plans but was conscious of some places along the way that sounded interesting. One of those was Lynn’s Pharmacy, a family owned pharmacy in historic downtown Brazil. Lynn’s has a bonafide soda fountain with a counter where you can order a sandwich and chocolate malt.

It’s a landmark along the National Road for good reason. The owners have operated a pharmacy in this historic building since 1970 but worked hard to add this authentic soda fountain about 23 years ago. When you step inside you wouldn’t know that it hasn’t always been there.

I learned a lot during my brief visit, chatting with a family member who was working that day. In fact, we had a delightful conversation where she asked about my trip and I asked about the business. We swapped stories like old friends as she prepared my caramel sundae.

They offer shakes, malts, sundaes and, of course, old fashioned sodas. They also prepare some simple sandwiches if you’re looking to grab a quick bite like a Coney Dog or BLT. The counter is made of oak and stainless steel and measures twelve feet long. You can sit at the counter like I did or at one of the many wood and metal cafe style tables.

I went for the atmosphere but was pleasantly surprised at the quality of the ice cream and the company.

A mosaic black and white tile floor anchors the room while a high ceiling of tin tiles and large store front windows make the space feel light and airy. Antique fixtures along the walls are filled with antique pharmacy items and souvenirs from the community.

The pharmacy is also quite nice and seems to sell everything you might need. They even have some gift items and a home medical care division. Lynn’s is promoted as a modern pharmacy with old fashioned values in personal service.

That summed up my experience.

I loved it here and will absolutely stop in again my next trip through. The woman I met that day was the daughter-in-law of the owner who installed the soda fountain. She said they have continued to invest in the business and the community and she spoke about the town with fierce pride and enthusiasm. It made me want to send them my prescription business but it’s a little too far to go for my meds!

In a community with a big box store, a chain grocery pharmacy, and two national chain pharmacies, it’s nice to see a mom and pop continuing to thrive. I’m guessing their success is a testament to their service and personal investment in the town of Brazil.

Brazil, Indiana is west of Indianapolis and has a cute downtown with murals and a few shops. If you go by National Road, less than an hour east of Brazil you’ll find yourself in the town of Plainfield which is home to the fabulous Oasis Diner and Gilley’s Antique and Decorator Mall which I love.

Click here to learn more about Lynn’s. 

 

Friday Eye Candy

Here’s a pop of color to balance out all those black and whites I’ve been showing you lately. It’s also a preview for a fun story I’ll tell you soon about an old fashioned soda fountain I found last month.

Happy Friday, my friends!

Signs Signs, Everywhere A Sign

I’m incapable of walking past a great sign without whipping out my phone to take a picture. Hope you enjoy these signs from my recent National Road adventure!