AUBURN, IND. - The Early Ford V-8 Foundation Museum in Auburn, Indiana, has been around for ten years. But the Dedication/Re-Grand Opening on May 10th, really put it on the map. What began in 2009 as an 8,000 square foot museum, known as Phase I, is now a 27,000 sq. ft. facility, thanks to the efforts of many Ford V-8 enthusiasts. It is truly a “destination.”
While some museums have consolidated their collections in smaller spaces, sold off some of their collections to raise funds, warned members of tough times ahead and some have closed down completely, the Early Ford V-8 Museum took a different approach. You might say they followed Henry Ford’s declaration to the county in 1936 when he stated, “The Great Depression is over!” and came out with an expanded lineup for 1936.
The dedication event featured a ribbon cutting by Auburn Mayor, Norm Yoder. Norm had performed many such ribbon cuttings in his five terms as Mayor, but this one was most impressive to him as he witnessed a much larger than usual turnout at noon on a weekday.
The facility now consists of three major areas: The original Phase I section now consists of a new Flathead Speed equipment display, featuring dozens of popular speed accessories of the ’32-’53 era. Two vehicles are on display: a 1926 Ford Model T powered by a decked-out Ford V-8 60 and a 1935 Miller Ford race car on loan from the Indianapolis Speedway Museum. Also in this section are a display of Ford V-8 powered industrial equipment; a Ford Farming display; many Flathead V-8 engines, transmissions, rear axles, etc. Many are cut-a-way models. Also added is a “1940s Ford Garage” sponsored by Dennis Carpenter Ford Restoration Parts, the Research Library, Gift Shop and an incredible Ford Toy Truck display on loan.
The next section is named the Frank Corey Gallery where a collection of ’32-’53 vehicles are on display. The late Frank Corey of New Mexico, donated our first car back in 2009, an original 1946 Mercury Coupe. He also left the Museum eleven other cars and an incredible cash donation. A children’s area will be added.
The third section is “Floyd Motors.” Joe Floyd of South Dakota, donated eighteen 1936 Fords to the museum and the funds to build a 10,000 sf addition to house them. Group Delphi designed and built an incredible, period-accurate, 1936 Ford Dealership—Floyd Motors. It has to be seen to be appreciated. This section also houses a rendition of the iconic Ford Rotunda. In the center of the Rotunda is a 1936 Ford Stainless Steel Sedan which Joe also donated. It sits on a turntable and is visible from outside though the Rotunda’s center window.
The Auburn area is alive with hotel renovations, new hotels and restaurants are under construction, the defunct Military Museum across from the V-8 facility has new owners and its 200,000 sf building is leasing space to other companies and renovations are in progress. All is good and the Ford V-8 Museum sits proudly among the other outstanding museums in the Auburn area. Visit www.fordv8foundation.org to learn more.
EARLY FORD V-8 FOUNDATION MUSEUM
5634 C. R. 11A
AUBURN, IN 46706