|By Eric C. Rodenberg
ELKHART, Ind. – More than 300 registered bidders from throughout the United States turned out for the Robert Lovejoy estate auction. The auction was also webcast live by Hahn Auctioneers Inc.
The auction was comprised of 300 lots of fully restored classic automobiles, antique fuel pumps, advertising signs, petrolioana collectibles and car parts. A well-known lifetime resident of Elkhart, Bob Lovejoy was a passionate collector of vintage automobiles, doing much of the restoration work himself. After earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from Tri-State University in nearby Angola, Ind., he worked as a mechanical engineer for C.T.S. Corporation for 21 years. Following his tenure at C.T.S., he owned his own business, F & F Grinding Service for 16 years before retiring. He died in May at the age of 81 years.
The Lovejoy collection of automobile-related material was highly diversified and included several quality vehicles and accessories, testifying to Lovejoy’s lifetime knowledge and fine-eyed discernment in both buying and restoring motorized artifacts from the past. His eclectic collection of petroliana was also highly contested with many items bringing higher than expected bids.
The top seller was a handsome forest green 1934 V-8 Ford Victoria, a second-owner car with all the documentation of parts utilized in its 2004 restoration. This special car, with only a little more than 22,000 miles on the odometer and a rare pop-out trunk option, sold after much competition for $33,000.
Other top sellers include a 1931 Ford Model A Leatherback Victoria which sold for $25,300; 1931 Ford Model A roadster pickup, $14,300; a 1934 Ford pickup short bed, in early stage of restoration, $5,500; a 1914 Ford Model T also brought $5,500; and a vintage 1964 Dodge Dart 2-door GT car sold for $4,800.
One stand-out oddity was a fully restored 1950s Cushman box step motor scooter that sold for $2,000.
Among the mixed collection of petroliana selling were a fully restored 10-gallon Tokheim Visible pump that sold for $3,850; a Ball Crank pump sold for $250; a Tokheim Sinclair pump brought $2,850; and a Tokheim clockface pump brought $3,500.
All the previously mentioned price quotes included a 10 percent buyer’s premium.
The following petroliana items were also highly contested at Hahn’s auction. The prices on the following do not include a buyer’s premium.
A Texaco oil North Dakota motorized tanker ship promotional toy brought $250; a Texaco 1-gallon outboard-motor can, $75; two vintage Texaco map holder racks sold for $95; a Texaco porcelain “No Smoking” sign, dated 1933, $75; a 7 foot by 4 ˝ foot double-sided porcelain Texaco sign, $2,500; a round lighted Texaco sign, $190; A Ford V8 sign, $275; and an Anco windshield wiper display center service cart, $90.
Also among petroliana items selling well were a 1960s Texaco pressed steel fuel tanker toy truck, $65; a Moline pressed steel Buddy L Texaco fuel toy truck, $80; an Ertl Texaco truck with oil tanker, $50; a Texaco long spout gas can, $75; a 4-foot by 28 inch Wolf’s Head motor oil sign (one-sided), $190; a Champion spark plug tester/cleaner, $275; a display of Ford Motor Company wrenches, $225; and a double sided oil can display rack, $375.
Hahn Auctioneers, Inc. is a third-generation auction family, founded by its patriarch Roger Hahn in 1964. Phil followed in his father’s footsteps within four years, followed by his son, Jason, who became an auctioneer in 1994.
Since its formation, Hahn Auctioneers has specialized in farm equipment, antiques, estates and livestock auctions. The company is particularly renowned for its many sales of Holstein dairy cows throughout Indiana and Michigan.
Joining the team headquarters in Nappanee, Indiana, are auctioneers Brian Wuthrich, Gene Robinson and Clint Cripe. Brandi Kitson, a broker, realtor and auction accounting manager, is the person who makes it all work smoothly.
Contact: (574) 773-8445