NAAM E-NEWS – June 2015, Volume 17, Issue 2

June 30, 2015 in Uncategorized by Courtney Meredith

NAAM E-NEWS – June 2015, Volume 17, Issue 2

In This Issue

President’s Message

By: Terry Ernest

Terry NAAM portrait CPTAs I write this, we have just returned from a very successful NAAM Annual Meeting and Conference held in Warren, Ohio, and hosted by the National Packard Museum. Director Mary Ann Porinchak, ably assisted by Christine Bobco and Charles Ohlin, went out of their way to make our conference fantastic!

We had some great sessions regarding grant research, exhibit planning, social marketing and many more. Discussions about disaster planning included fire, floods and the sink-hole at the Corvette National Museum. Swarms of locusts were fortunately not included.

We also had some great tours. A tour of the secretive Delphi (formerly Packard Electric) electrical testing facility was splendid, as was a tour of the Cleveland Museum of Art. After a wonderful lunch (arranged by Mary Ann’s daughter) was a tour of the Crawford Auto Aviation Collection, conducted by Curator Derek Moore. Derek did an excellent job of showing us the collection of Cleveland based auto manufacturers and other various transportation artifacts. Our conference ended with a banquet at our host Museum, the National Packard Museum. Dining among the fabulous Packards and spending time with friends in the transportation museum industry, was particularly enjoyable.

One of the many things that I appreciate about NAAM conferences is the willingness of members to share their expertise about various matters. The museum I represent, by most any standard, is very small. But that doesn’t mean we aren’t serious about our purpose, which is to tell our unique story in a compelling manner. Learning how to do this is one of the primary reasons we joined NAAM, and why I go to the annual conference every year. I have considered that perhaps small museums like ours, gain more out of the association than do larger more established museums. However, I spoke with a director from a large museum who noted they gained a lot from this year’s conference topics , which means NAAM conferences are helpful for large museums also.

I was also delighted to see younger members of the museum community present at the conference. Automobile museums as an industry will benefit from fresh ideas and concepts that this next generation of leaders will produce.

So when it comes to NAAM’s annual conferences, what’s not to like! A fantastic tour, interesting and informative sessions and friendly people made this a superb conference. And hold onto your hats. Next year (May 2016) our Annual meeting and conference will be in Bar Harbor, Maine, hosted by Raney Bench, Director of the Seal Cove Museum. I can’t wait!

If I may be of assistance, please contact me at:


The National Association of Automobile Museums is a professional center of excellence for automobile museums and affiliated organizations that supports, educates and encourages members to operate according to professional standards of the museum industry.


We sincerely thank the National Packard Museum for hosting a remarkable conference for NAAM in Warren, Ohio, from March 17 – 20, 2015. We especially thank Mary Ann Porinchak , Executive Director of the Packard Museum and her staff, Christine Bobco and Charlie Ohlin for coordinating endless details and the Packard team for their assistance in many areas.

There were 66 attendees, many for the first time, representing 44 museum entities, nine informative sessions, three tour destinations, three scholarships awarded and 23 NAAMY Awards presented.

The closing banquet included fun entertainment, and the highly-anticipated NAAMY Awards presentation by Christine Bobco, National Packard Museum. It was a delightful evening of warm conversation and delicious dining.

Thank You to Our Supporters

We extend our heartfelt appreciation to our generous sponsors, whose support helped make this conference a great success:

  • Hagerty – The Official Insurance Provider of the National Association of Automobile Museums
  • Richard H. Driehaus Trust and National Parts Depot – Generous sponsors of the NAAM Scholarship Program
  • Residence Inn – Hotel host and welcome dinner accommodations
  • Trumball County Tourism Bureau – City informational packets
  • Kent State University, Trumball Campus – Session room accommodations

NAAMY Awards

Congratulations to our 2014 NAAMY Award Winners who were recognized at the 2015 Annual Conference! Each award recognizes industry leaders for achievement, professionalism and creativity. NAAMY are designed to further promote professionalism in automotive museum managerial, curatorial, educational and promotional work.

Congratulations to the following award winners:

2014 NAAMY Award winners

Division I

Museums with budgets less than $300,000

Books and Exhibit Catalogs

1st Place NAAMY Award of Excellence – William E. Swigart, Jr. Automobile Museum

Events and Public Promotions

3rd Place NAAMY Award of Excellence – Wills Sainte Claire Auto Museum

Newsletters and Magazines

2nd Place NAAMY Award of Excellence – Wills Sainte Claire Auto Museum

Website Design

2nd Place NAAMY Award of Excellence – Lincoln Motor Car Heritage Museum

Division II

Museums with budgets greater than $300,000

Collateral Materials

2nd Place NAAMY Award of Excellence – Antique Automobile Club of America Museum
2nd Place – Antique Automobile Club of America Museum
3rd Place – Antique Automobile Club of America Museum

Educational Programs

1st Place NAAMY Award of Excellence – Indianapolis Motor Speedway Hall of Fame
2nd Place – National Automobile Museum (The Harrah Collection)
3rd Place – America On Wheels Museum

Events and Public Promotions

1st Place NAAMY Award of Excellence – Antique Automobile Club of America Museum
2nd Place – Antique Automobile Club of America Museum
3rd Place – Antique Automobile Club of America Museum

Film and Video

1st Place NAAMY Award of Excellence – National Corvette Museum
3rd Place – Studebaker National Museum

Interpretive Exhibits

1st Place NAAMY Award of Excellence – Antique Automobile Club of America Museum
2nd Place – Owls Head Transportation Museum
3rd Place – Studebaker National Museum

Newsletters and Magazines

1st Place NAAMY Award of Excellence – Owls Head Transportation Museum
2nd Place – National Automobile Museum (The Harrah Collection
3rd Place – National Corvette Museum

Website Design

1st Place NAAMY Award of Excellence – Owls Head Transportation Museum
2nd Place – National Corvette Museum


Congratulations to three NAAM members who received scholarships to attend the 2015 Annual Conference. Awards included $1,000 for travel expenses, plus complimentary conference registration. These valuable scholarships were made possible thanks to a generous sponsorship from Richard Driehaus and National Parts Depot.

NAAM is dedicated to helping its members grow professionally through informative annual conferences and networking opportunities. To fulfill this goal, NAAM offers conference scholarships each year. The scholarship program is designed for museums with limited financial resources to pay for their staff to attend.

Congratulations to our 2015 recipients:

Marjorie Cutright, Executive Director, William E. Swigart, Jr. Automobile Museum

Penny Dye, Secretary/Treasurer, Pontiac-Oakland Museum & Resource Center, Inc.

Vreni Fernandez, PR & Marketing, Kansas City Automotive Museum, Inc.


Make Your Hotel Reservations

A Hotel Room Block is now ready for reservations for the 2016 NAAM Conference hosted by the Seal Cove Auto Museum in Bar Harbor, Maine. Please see the information below for making reservations. While the room block expires on April 2, 2016, our conference host recommends making reservations early since rooms are in demand during this period.

For your planning purposes, the conference starts with a Welcome Reception on Tuesday night, May 3, and concludes on Friday night, May 6, 2016, with the closing banquet and NAAMY Awards Ceremony. The room block dates begin on Monday, 5/2/2016, to accommodate our attendees traveling from the west. Also, the hotel is extending the conference room rate for three days before and after the block for anyone who would like to visit the area.

As always, this will be another excellent professional development and networking opportunity. Conference details will be available by early 2016.

Hotel Room Block

Group Number: NAAM050316
Room Rate: $99, plus 8% room tax
Atlantic Oceanside Hotel & Conference Center

119 Eden Street
Bar Harbor, Maine 04609

Reservation Office: (800) 336-2463
Hotel: (207) 288-5801

Room Guarantee: Individual room deposits, equal to one night’s room rate, are due at the time the reservation is made. Individual deposits are refundable, less a $20 administrative fee, if cancellation notification is given 7 or more days prior to arrival date. Cancellations received with 6 or fewer days prior to arrival are subject to a fee equal to one night’s lodging.


Curators Engage Guests

Aaron Warkentin

Curator of Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum

As curators of automobile museums, we have a duty to engage our guests in telling relevant stories that express the significance of our museums’ missions. We at the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum must highlight the historical, social, and technological significance of the Auburn, Cord and Duesenberg automobiles through exhibitory signage. Our great curatorial conundrum is to write signage that can be understood by a wide variety of people. In this article, I will discuss two issues that curators struggle with and how my staff and I resolved these issues in our museum’s newly renovated Raisbeck Engineering Hall of Technology.

In the renovation of our Hall of Technology, we encountered two major hurdles in communicating the technical and mechanical aspects of an automobile to the changing demographic of our guests: 1) creating effective and clearly understood signage, and 2) the difficulty of illustrating, through both 2D images and 3D objects, the operation of various mechanical components. Previously the automotive hobbyist, as well as the mechanically-minded individuals were our main visitorship. This has changed to those who have an interest in the automobile and its history but lack the mechanical knowledge. The critical consideration in developing any signage or interactive was our guests’ interests and knowledge of the mechanical working of the automobile. It has been our experience that our guests’ technical knowledge ranges from nearly zero to expert level.

Initially, we had designed signs with diagrams, technical images and a lot of text, providing in-depth explanations of the mechanical devices and technical innovations developed by the Auburn Automobile Company (AAC) and Duesenberg, Inc. How would we provide a base knowledge on how an automobile functioned to those who did not possess the background? Without that base knowledge one can become easily confused by the technical information and quickly become indifferent or disinterested in the exhibit.

Each of the 21 signs went through an average of six edits and proofreads. The text on the final versions was pared down to only one-third of the original word count. This required the involvement of all four curatorial staff members. We constantly asked ourselves upon each edit, “Are we explaining the subject with a reasonable degree of simplicity?” “Are we creating more questions than answers?” “Are we introducing ideas that do not directly relate to the subject we are writing about?” It was a difficult and painstakingly long process, but well worth the effort.

We included biographies of AAC and Duesenberg, Inc. engineers along with their technical innovations used in their production of cars. With these signs we again asked ourselves, “How can we create connections between the man and the machine?” We decided that on the same sign we would place the biography of each engineer above the technical innovation he developed. This provides a human connection to the mechanical device they created. For example, we have displayed an Auburn supercharger modified by August Duesenberg. Directly to the right is a sign with a biography of August and a description how a supercharger operates.

Every sign relates to the artifacts in the display cases, the interactives and the other signage in the Hall of Technology. By the linking of images, text and ideas, the guest receives a fuller understanding of how Auburn, Cord and Duesenberg technical innovations have affected the wider automotive world, both in the past and present to the widest audience.

How were we to illustrate the operation of an engine using 2D and 3D artifacts? We recognize that people learn by doing, so we included two physical interactives and one digital interactive. We incorporated a Cord V-8 engine with a steering wheel attached. Guests can turn the engine camshaft and see the actuation of the valve train. The sign for the Cord engine includes a description of its unique valve train design and the guest learns how this component is important to the operation of the engine.

Through the assistance of a local automotive parts manufacturer and a local university, we were able to develop and enhance our low cost interactives. Working with a local university, we were able to take advantage of their Information Technology expertise to enhance an existing display, a Cord automobile chassis. A university student worked with our touchscreen software provider to create an touchscreen which illuminates various parts on the actual chassis. The visitor can now learn how the car components work while identifying them on a real automobile.

We also changed the physical layout of the exhibit hall to create a more open and welcoming space for our guests. Simply dividing in half the freestanding wall, which had been used for signage display, made a dramatic improvement to the space. Fresh paint in warmer tones helped to make the room more inviting. We also rearranged a display of several large engines, which had been lined up along one wall. By pulling out the engines and spacing them so that the guests could walk around them, we encouraged visitors to stop and examine them in conjunction with its related signage, rather than to hurry past.

Through thoughtful interpretation, we can make our automotive subject matter, which is intimidating or even boring to some, both accessible and engaging. The key is to view your exhibitry through the eyes of your least initiated visitor. Yes, it takes a lot of effort, but your creative interpretation may well motivate the next generation to preserve our history.


Gilmore Car Museum – Hickory Corners, Michigan

A KIA Summer Photography Workshop,
“Chrome and Metal Detroit style at the
Gilmore Car Museum” was offered in June 2015

Organized by the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, attendees enjoyed taking photographs of America’s classic dreamboats of the open road at the Gilmore Car Museum with automotive industry photo professional, Jim Secreto. Participants photographed a selection of cars from the museum’s collection alongside Jim, learning about how best to capture the classic beauties using morning and evening light, angle of view and equipment choice. As a special bonus, GCM members registered at the KIA member rate for this class!

Model A Ford Museum – Hickory Corners, Michigan

The Model A Ford Museum was constructed in 2012 and opened one year later at the

Gilmore CAR Museum Campus in Hickory Corners, Michigan. The theme of our Museum is “A Stroll Through the Model A Years”. The museum’s interior is designed to display the many body styles of the Model A, year by year. Other displays include historical, political and economic events that occurred during a tumultuous period.

The vehicles used to carry out this theme begins with a Model T Ford, and then show the new Model A styles to meet competition between 1928 and 1931:Roadsters, Coupes, Sedans, and Deluxe Phaetons. Special exhibits include a miniature assembly plant, the School Bus and Schoolroom, a Postal truck and a Tow truck. Other uses of the Model A engines include how amateur pilots used the Model A engine to fly the Pietenpole airplane, with the engine mounted backward. The Model A Ford Foundation, Inc (MAFFI) is the umbrella for the Model A Community which designed and built a replica of a 1929 Ford dealership, featuring a salesroom and authentic parts department.

San Diego Automotive Museum – San Diego, California

Thanks to the wonderful local collectors, Camp Pendleton, the MCRD Museum, and the Veteran’s Museum, we are able to produce an amazing display of vehicles and memorabilia that highlight an important chapter of San Diego history, Balboa Park, the War Years. Active and retired military will be admitted free during the run of this exhibit. We are also working in collaboration with the Veteran’s Museum in Balboa Park.  Show your ticket receipt from our museum at the Veteran’s Museum, and you will be admitted free!

 Exhibit News

41 Old Hubcaps Becomes International Art Initial Collection.

 Wilkes-Barre, PA (October 21, 2014) – In 2008, Ken Marquis, a Pennsylvania picture framer, had an epiphany while milling around an automobile show. “I started rushing up and down vendor aisles buying old hub caps. I bought 41 rusted old hub caps that day. My friend thought I was crazy. I said ‘I have an idea’.”

Marquis’ idea has led to the largest non-profit international art initiative of its kind, The Landfillart Project. ( 1,041 hubcap “metal and plastic canvasses” are now 1,041 exceptional works of art — kindling a powerful message of sustainable, green living and the transformative power of Art.

Landfillart’s new mission is to create an exclusive long-term partnership with a company to curate and manage in perpetuity this unique art collection.

The Landfillart’s hubcap origins are well branded for the automobile industry. The selected organization will curate in perpetuity the Landfillart collection – 1041 individual works of art – to share with audiences around the world – receive perpetual naming rights, and benefit from the marketing opportunities of the over 1000 artists’ stories behind each work of art. Profit sharing of exhibition sponsorships, companion book sales, and other merchandising is also negotiable.

Museums and companies seeking more information on the Landfillart Project partnerships can email:, and visit:

1041 artists from every state in the U.S. and 52 countries – places like Austria, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, and Denmark among many other nations – have re-claimed a discarded hubcap. The range of contributing artists is hard to characterize. They encompass every age and ethnicity and also include disabled veterans, at-risk youth, persons with special needs, and Native Americans.

On June 1, 2011, an international wire service news story broke to over 1000 major print, television, radio, and digital news organizations announcing Landfillart.

One year later, this art collection was selected by the Museum of Shenandoah Valley which launched Landfillart’s first-ever public opening, “Second Time Around: The Hubcap as Art,” in September, 2014. ( “Second Time Around” opened to record crowds in its first week and will be on display through March 2015.

Retail News


Eurographics is a jigsaw puzzle wholesaler who offer numerous automobile related images which would make a fine addition to your museum gift shops. Their puzzles are made in the USA with blue-board, which is the highest quality in the puzzle industry, a perfect fit for high end museum shops.

The images available include cars of the 1930s, 1940s, 1950s and 1960s. Also they have images of vintage Mustangs, Corvettes, Camaros, and vintage pickup trucks from Chevy and Ford.  You may view the images on their website, You may contact their Sales Manager, Joe Fink, directly at 520-429-5050.  He will be happy to provide you with samples or any additional information you may need.

Automobile Quarterly Magazine

Almost 40 years ago, I started a subscription for Automobile Quarterly Magazine. AQ was published 4 times a year.  It is a hard bound book, usually around 130 pages, free of advertising.  It was supported entirely by subscription dues.

Almost immediately I began to purchase available back issues from AQ.  Finally I backfilled my collection with around a half dozen used issues, but all in very fine or excellent condition.

The collection consist of:
51 complete volumes, each containing 4 hard bound books (total of 204 books)
The last issue number 52-1
52 slipcases, one for each Volume of 4 issues
9 indexes (same style hard bound book) covering Volumes 1 – 20
Index for Issues 21 – 40
Personal Planners for 2005 and 2006.

In all there are a total of 217 books and about 55 slipcases, when AQ ceased publishing (death of the publisher).

The final price of the AQ issue was $29.95 each and slipcases were $16.95 each. Therefore the estimated value of the collection is approximately $7,300.00. I am open to any suggestions for disposing of the entire collection; from a discounted sale to an outright gift.

Richard A. Hiteshew
611 Oak Hill Road
Catonsville, MD 21228
410-788-8811 (office)
410-744-4440 (home)