Hartung Collection spurs bidder frenzy in Illinois

Ron Kowalke |

Story and photos by Ron Kowalke

The automotive equivalent of Woodstock, attendees of the Nov. 3-5 Lee Roy Hartung Collection auction will remember this event decades from now, and the buzz from the sale will continue on the internet and in print for weeks to come. Prices paid for a handful of featured items in the collection exceeded all logic when compared to fair market value, but Hartung’s eclectic collection accumulated over much of his lifetime was mind-boggling itself in scope and originality.

The three-day auction, held on the grounds of Hartung’s museum in Glenview, Ill., was presented by Auctions America by RM. Plenty of pre-sale publicity, generated both by the auction house and “grapevine” word-of-mouth by those familiar with Hartung’s stash of vintage vehicles, automobilia and non-automotive antiques attracted a standing-room-only crowd each day inside a large tent erected on-site to host the auction.

A video created by Auctions America by RM chronicling Hartung’s life in still photographs labeled him as “Chicago’s Best Picker,” in reference to his scrap metal business that serviced the wealthy northern suburbs of Chicago beginning in the late 1940s. It was in this line of work that Hartung acquired much of his collection from the cast-offs of others.

While prices paid for several custom automobiles and vintage motorcycles garnered much of the attention (see listings), Old Cars Weekly would like to share a broader range of items rescued and saved by Lee Roy Hartung as a tribute to a true car enthusiast who had vision beyond his years.

AUCTIONS AMERICA BY RM
LEE ROY HARTUNG COLLECTION
Glenview, Ill, 11-3/4/5-2011
Ron Kowalke reporting

Vehicles listed were declared sold.

Year/Make/Model    Price/Condition
1934 Armstrong-Siddeley 4d Sed,
OHV 6-cyl, RHD, SMts    $2,000    4
1959 Bentley 4d Sed,
LHD, 35K, chassis #B332LCK    $16,000    4
1958 Cadillac-Eureka 4d Hearse, 44K    $6,500    4
1948 Crosley 2d Sta Wag,
9,600 orig miles    $2,000    4
1959 Edsel Ranger 4d Sed    $200    5
1932 Essex Sup 6 Terraplane 4d Sed,
6-cyl    $6,500    4
1959 Fiat Spyder 2d Conv, 4-cyl, 90K    $7,500    4
1909 Ford T Chassis Mod, ’09 4-cyl #3195,
w/Rbt body conversion    $13,500    4
1914 Ford T Express Mod, w/’16 T 4-cyl    $4,000    4
1915 Ford T 4d Trg, 4-cyl    $9,000    4
1916 Ford T Rbt Mod, trg conversion,
w/police lights & graphics    $5,000    4
1920 Ford T 2d Center Door Sed Mod,
4-cyl, w/’15 radiator & hood    $5,500    4
1920 Ford T Mod,
4-cyl, w/horse-drawn carriage body    $3,000    4
1922 Ford T 4d Trg, 4-cyl, w/o top    $2,000    4
1922 Ford T Depot Hack, 4-cyl    $5,500    3
1923 Ford T 4d Sed Mod, w/’26 T 4-cyl    $4,000    5
1924 Ford T 4d Sed,
4-cyl, w/radiator water bag    $6,000    4
1924 Ford TT C-cab Tanker Mod,
4-cyl w/o cyl head    $3,500    5
1926 Ford T 2d Sed, 4-cyl, w/o hood,
w/sun visor & Hayes WW    $3,250    4
1928 Ford A 2d Rds PU, 4-cyl, SMt    $4,500    4
1928 Ford A 4d Sed, 4-cyl, w/Briggs body    $2,750    4
1928 Ford A 2d Sed    $2,500    5
1928 Ford A 4d Phae, 4-cyl    $6,750    4
1928 Ford A 2d Sed,
body shell & chassis only, w/o title    $700    6
1928 Ford A 2d Spt Cpe, 4-cyl    $2,750    5
1929 Ford A 4d Phae, 4-cyl    $6,000    4
1929 Ford A 2d Cpe, 4-cyl, 5W    $6,000    4
1929 Ford 2d 1T Stake,
4-cyl, w/worm-drive rear gear    $5,000    4
1929 Ford A 2d Sed,
4-cyl, w/radiator water bag    $3,000    4
1929 Ford A 2d Rds PU, 4-cyl,
SMt, w/whiskey barrels in bed    $10,500    4
1929 Ford A Std 2d Cpe, V-8, 5W    $6,500    4
1930 Ford A Std 2d Cpe,
4-cyl, 5W, w/radiator water bag    $6,250    4
1930 Ford A DeL 2d Rds Mod, 4-cyl,
w/o fenders, w/’35 16-inch whls    $10,000    5
1930 Ford A 2d PU, 4-cyl    $7,500    4
1930 Ford A 4d Town Sed    $4,000    4
1930 Ford A 4d Town Sed, 4-cyl    $2,250    4
1930 Ford A 2d Cabr, 4-cyl w/o cyl head,
68-B straight windshield model    $3,750    5
1930 Ford A Std 2d Cpe, 4-cyl, 5W    $4,250    4
1930 Ford A Open Mod, 4-cyl, converted
to open car w/double rbt seating    $1,500    4
1930 Ford A 2d Sed, 4-cyl    $3,500    4
1930 Ford A 4d Town Sed, 4-cyl, SMt    $3,100    4
1930 Ford A Std 2d Cpe,
4-cyl, 5W, w/radiator water bag    $6,250    4
1930 Ford A 4d Sed, 4-cyl    $3,500    4
1930 Ford A Open Flatbed Mod,
w/printing press mounted on bed    $1,000    4
1931 Ford A 2d 1-1/2T Flatbed    $1,000    5
1931 Ford AA 1d Bus (factory) Mod,
4-cyl, dually, Chicago paddy wag replica,
red & green headlight lenses    $4,500    4
1931 Ford A Std 2d Cpe, 4-cyl, 5W, SMts    $5,000    4
1931 Ford A 4d Town Sed, 4-cyl    $2,500    4
1931 Ford A 2d Cabr,
4-cyl, 68-C slant windshield model    $10,500    5
1931 Ford A 4d Town Sed,
4-cyl, slant windshield model    $3,000    4
1931 Ford A Mod, 4-cyl w/Winfield cyl head,
cowl & chassis only, #7 racer replica    $1,750    5
1931 Ford A 2d Vic Sed,
190A “steelback” model    $5,000    4
1931 Ford DeL 2d Rds Mod,
4-cyl, R/S, w/period-correct
aftermarket trim accessories    $22,000    3
1931 Ford A 2d Spt Cpe, 4-cyl    $6,600    4
1931 Ford A 2d Cabr, 4-cyl w/o cyl head,
68-B straight windshield model    $6,900    5
1931 Ford A DeL 2d Sed, 4-cyl    $3,000    4
1931 Ford A 2d Sed, 4-cyl    $4,000    4
1932 Ford B 2d Sed, 4-cyl    $8,000    5
1932 Ford B 2d Sed,
4-cyl, w/o pass rear quarter glass    $16,000    4
1933 Ford BB 2d Stake, 4-cyl,
ex-Everitt Resort, Eagle River, WI    $9,000    4
1934 Ford 4d Phae Mod,
w/59AB flathead V-8    $22,000    4
1935 Ford DeL 2d Cpe, V-8, 5W    $9,000    4
1936 Ford 2d Cabr Mod,
w/’40s V-8 w/Fenton heads &
dual carbs, w/o front clip    $5,000    6
1937 Ford DeL Slantback 2d Sed,
w/amber fog lights    $3,500    5
1938 Ford DeL 2d Sed, V-8, 85-hp    $1,750    5
1940 Ford DeL 2d Conv, V-8,
w/amber fog lamps & grille guard    $27,000    4
1941 Ford Sup DeL 4d Sed,
V-8, w/amber headlamps    $1,750    4
1927 Henney 4d Limo,
Lycoming 8-cyl, 7P, believed
1 of fewer than 10 in existence    $7,500    4
1925 Hertz D-1 4d Trg,
Continental 6-cyl #10V-1688, 5P,
non-folding top w/side windows,
w/Yellow Cab chassis #95030,
used as Chicago taxi until ’34    $11,000    4
1936 Lincoln Zephyr 4d Sed Mod,
V-12, custom twin grilles,
19.5K, w/fender skirts    $9,750    4
1941 Lincoln Cont 2d Cpe Mod,
w/o engine & rear bumper    $2,500    4
1941 Mercury DeL 2d Conv,
w/o engine, bumpers & top    $2,400    5
1937 Pontiac 6 4d Trg Sed, 6-cyl    $1,750    4
1933 Rolls-Royce 20/25 4d Enclosed Limo,
6-cyl, chassis #GAF77,
w/division window, SMts    $8,500    4
1937 Rolls-Royce 25/30 4d Spt Sed,
6-cyl, RHD, chassis #GPG49    $9,500    4
1922 Studebaker Big Six 2d PU Mod,
SMt, touring conversion    $1,500    4
1934 Sunbeam Talbot 4d Sed,
6-cyl, RHD, S/R, w/Lucas headlamps    $6,500    4
Miscellaneous
1950 Edwards R-26 2d Rds,
Jaguar XK-120 6-cyl,
‘50 Ford whls, believed to be ’50
Pebble Beach Concours winner    $125,000    3
1950 Veritas BMW 2d Conv,
one-off custom, KO disc whls,
BMW #5098 chassis/#97812 engine,
49,800 orig kilometers    $170,000    4
1930 Worthington Lawn Tractor,
w/’32 Ford Model B drivetrain    $2,250    4
Motorcycles
1942 BSA M20     $6,500    4
1958 Cushman Eagle Motor Scooter,
flathead 318cc, 2-Spd    $2,250    4
1911 Excelsior, 1-cyl    $40,000    4
1917 Excelsior, w/sidecar    $27,500    4
1921 Excelsior     $42,500    4
1904 Fabrique-Nationale,
4-cyl, shaft drive    $48,000    4
1911 Flying Merkel, twin belt drive    $175,000    4
1912 Harley-Davidson, 1-cyl, belt drive    $100,000    4
1915 Harley-Davidson, 1-cyl, 2-Spd    $50,000    4
1934 Harley-Davidson VLD,
1200cc, w/o front fender    $11,000    4
1945 Harley-Davidson WL    $12,000    4
19?? Henderson KJ    $35,000    6
1926 Henderson, Glenview F.D. livery,
w/reverse gear    $55,000    3
1926 Henderson, frame only    $26,000    6
1928 Henderson, 4-cyl    $47,500    4
1911 Indian, belt drive    $45,000    4
1913 Indian, twin    $48,000    4
1913 Indian, twin    $15,000    6
1931 Indian Scout 101, w/o engine    $10,500    6
1936 Indian, 4-cyl    $40,000    4
1936 Indian, 4-cyl    $32,500    6
1938 Indian, w/rigid frame    $56,000    4
1941 Indian, 4-cyl    $40,000    6
1911 Pope H, L.R. Hartung 2nd owner, orig
owner’s widow stored it in closet    $72,500    4
1909 Sears    $57,500    4
1910 Thor    $32,500    4
1913 Thor, twin, w/side car    $47,000    4
1902 Wagner    $28,000    4
1912 Wagner    $12,500    6
1948 Whizzer Motorbike    $1,300    4
1950 Whizzer Motorbike    $1,200    4

Pedal cars were also well represented in the Hartung Collection. This original 1950 Garton “Kidillac” example was sold with the boat pedal car behind it, and the pair brought $1,500.

The auction featured many toy vehicles, including this two-piece, pressed-steel Sturditoy tanker truck. It sold for $2,000.

This one-piece painted milk-glass White Crown gas globe sold for $550.

One of the featured items in the Hartung Collection was this original-condition 1911 Flying Merkel twin belt-drive motorcycle. It sold for $175,000.

Pre-dating metal license plates, this early Michigan plate made from leather sold for $2,000.

Items of a similar theme were often grouped together in one lot, such as this Sterling spark plug tin sign and B&B spark plug cloth banner. The pair sold for $700.

Believed to have been the winner of the 1950 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, this 1950 Edwards R-26 roadster sold for $125,000.

The featured car of this auction was this 1950 Veritas BMW convertible custom that showed just 49,800 kilometers from build date. It sold for $170,000.

Causing a double take, this twin-grille 1936 Lincoln Zephyr sedan created by Lake Forest, Ill., inventor Willard Morrison sold for $9,750.

Top seller among the Hartung Collection Fords was this 1940 Deluxe convertible that brought $27,000.

Lee Roy Hartung was just the second owner of this 1911 Pope Model H motorcycle. The original owner’s widow stored it for many years in a closet. It sold for $72,500.

Finished in Glenview Fire Deparment livery, this 1926 Henderson motorcycle, equipped with lights and siren and reverse gear, sold for $55,000.

Nicknamed the “Spook,” this Whizzer Ambassador motorbike sold for $2,600.

This trio is a small portion of the vintage West Virginia license plates among the many thousands of plates in the Hartung Collection. The West Virginia series sold for $26,000.

The Hartung Collection consisted of many pressed-steel Sturditoy trucks, including these (Lot 5438) dump and wrecker models. The pair sold for $1,600.

This unique early auto show banner was part of a mixed lot that also consisted of Coca-Cola memorabilia, petroliana and old auto parts brochures. The lot sold for $500.

A flame-finished quarter midget race car from the 1950s drew lots of interest from bidders, eventually selling for $3,250.

This embossed porcelain Mobil Oil Pegasus sign sold for $3,250.

Equipped with mounting brackets, this circular, two-sided, porcelain De Soto/Plymouth Approved Service sign sold for $3,000.

Showing some wear, this circular, two-sided, porcelain Texaco Gasoline/Motor Oil sign sold for $2,000.

This Offenhauser four-barrel aluminum intake manifold was one-half of a lot that also contained what was believed to be a three-carb Oldsmobile manifold, year unknown. The pair sold for $700.

In the automobile/motorcycle display tent, a keepsake “In memory of” placard was set on a table for people to write farewell messages to Lee Roy Hartung.

 

One Response to Hartung Collection spurs bidder frenzy in Illinois

  1. Salvageprincess says:

    What an amazing collection and equally amazing person to talk with.

Leave a Reply