Feb 19 2019

Henry Austin Clark, Jr.‘s 1974 Photos of the Alco Black Beast

Seeking material for the Long Island Automotive Museum's postcard series, Henry Austin Clark, Jr. visited collector Joel E. Finn (1938-2017) at his Ridgefield, Connecticut home. Among  the 1974 images captured by Clark were these photos of the Alco Black Beast, which was then owned by Joel.

Courtesy of the Revs Institute.


Howard Kroplick

Joel Finn in the Alco Black Beast

Henry Austin Clark, Jr.'s photo envelope.

Long Island Automotive Museum Postcard 1909 Alco Black Beast


Feb 20 2019 Walt Gosden 11:10 AM

I was working for Austin part time in his library in Glen Cove when he went to take the photos ( on 4 x 5 sheet film) of the Alco. And we had conversations of that when he recalled how the chassis came from Ohio etc. when it was discovered /owned by a collector there.

Feb 24 2019 S. Berliner, III 12:50 AM

Meadow Spring Lane, no?  Do you happen to remember the street number, Walt?  Could I prevail upon you to share more of that story, please?  Sam, III

Feb 24 2019 Earl Gandel 2:11 PM

Austin Clark had a huge collection of photos he took and turned into postcards for sale at the museum. Years later all or most of what was left turned up at the museum at Owl’s Head ME, along with some of his cars still bearing the Southampton museum’s stickers.

Feb 27 2019 Walt Gosden 2:06 PM

Sam, Austin only ever called the area Meadow Spring - his business cards, stationary etc only ever said those words. Depending upon what you believe that Google currently says it can be Meadow Spring Lane, Meadow Spring Road. or whatever the person who is listing it has to call it. I do not recall any of the houses having numbers either. We often would take one of his cars out ( with or without license plates) and drive around that circle to try them out to make sure they were running well . I do remember a dark blue 1909 (?) Packard model 30 roadster Austin owned that was restored by Lew Schaefer of Westbury when he owned it. Car had a miss and would backfire, and driving it around the loop would defoliate the trees we were driving under at the time when it did back fire. All kinds of leaves fell down .  It is a private community on the south side of Duck Pond Rd. just before you cross over the LIRR track branch if you are heading West I think there are about a dozen houses can’t recall exact number. Austin’s house was the first one built ca. 1927. I do not recall the exact name of the fellow in Ohio who owned the Alco chassis but he was a big enthusiast of the VMCCA ( Veteran Motor Car Club of America) as was Austin.
Earl, yes most or all all of the postcards that Austin had made up did wind up going to Maine eventually .

Feb 28 2019 Earl Gandel 12:41 PM

Walt’s mention of Lew Schaefer sparked a memory.  The board of BRRC (Bridgehampton Road Races Corporation, who put on the 1949-53 street races and built the track) included Henry Austin Clark, Lew Schaefer, B.J. Corrigan, Hewlett Tredwell, and Alfred Momo. Pioneers of post-war racing.

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