Apr 06 2019

Joe Tracy at the Long Island Automotive Museum in Southampton

While in his late 70s and early 80s, veteran Vanderbilt Cup Race driver Joe Tracy worked for Henry Austin Clark, Jr. at the Long Island Automotive Museum. Thanks to Walter McCarthy, several images and a video of Tracy at the museum have survived.


Howard Kroplick

Joe Tracy and a rare 1896 De Dion-Bouton tricycle.

In 1955, at the age of 82 years, Tracy sent this letter, the below postcard and an invoice. He also suggested that Clark invite George Robertson to assist in the design of the Bridgehampton race track.

Joe Tracy makes an appearance at the 3:32 mark. Courtesy of Walter McCarthy.

Great Met game today kept my flag waving!


Apr 07 2019 LMK 8:52 AM

RIP Joe Tracy….

Apr 07 2019 Jeff Perkins 9:21 AM

Never tire of seeing pics/video or hearing stories related to Austie and the L. I. Museum….Thank You for posting. About that last picture….Look out Mets, those reformatted and pesky Twins are coming to town next week!

Howard Kroplick

Jeff, they will be facing DeGroom and Thor!

Apr 07 2019 Roger A Price 9:36 AM

Thanks for those great Joe Tracy photos.  Also, thanks to Wally McCarthy.
By the way,  I knew you were a Mets fan.  Some game yesterday!

Apr 07 2019 S. Berliner, III 2:33 PM

OMG!  That trike!  See my <http://sbiii.com/limpvcp1.html#vandtrik> for much more about it.  Sam, III

Apr 07 2019 S. Berliner, III 2:40 PM

Post-script thought - perhaps uncharitable.  Did Austie employ Joe as a serious, working employee or was it more of a way to repay an old timer for many past courtesies?  Quite frankly, I don’t remember ever seeing Joe out there.  Possibly only Walt would know.  Sam, III

Apr 07 2019 S. Berliner, III 3:11 PM

Whoo!  I’m really on a toot, here.  That 1902 Curved-Dash Olds on the entry canopy apparently was for real and was the subject of your 28 Jun 2010 blog post, “A Research Challenge: The 1902 Curved-Dash Oldsmobile on Austin Clark’s Roof”.  It would seem nothing more ever came of that.  In the ‘80s or ‘90s, two couples used to tour LI and New England in a C-D Olds and a companion flat-dash REO.  I seem to remember seeing them once on Martha’s Vinyard or Nantucket ca. 1955 and last ca. 1990 at the tavern on the north side of Buckram Road east of Locust Valley (somehow I don’t think it was Barney’s - it wasn’t at Barney’s Corner but off by itself).  An I recall me aright, those two couples crossed the entire country in those two tiny, ancient, open cars.  Sam, III

Apr 09 2019 LMK 7:35 AM

S. Berliner III, Yes, that trike is awesome….

Apr 09 2019 frank femenias 1:32 PM

Awesome trike indeed and very interesting! This French? company may have produced various models. This trike compared to the one on Sam’s site (not the custom Vanderbilt version) has no foot pegs on the fork, the tires slightly smaller, and chain ring on the pedals slightly larger. Both front brake mechanisms appear the same, compressing the top of the tire under the head tube, but can’t make out the rear brake for beans. Too much stuff going on back there. The Vanderbilt version appears to possess a leather Brooks saddle, but never seen one with that suspension gadget underneath. Only the best! Thanks everyone for posting.

Apr 09 2019 S. Berliner, III 8:06 PM

Doubt it, Frank.  TWO customized narrow-track bikes?  Unlikely.  Reed Martin gussied up both the deDion (yes - French - 1883-1953) and the Orient (at right, below) alike.  Here are comparison shots together, plus two other deD-B trikes with normal track like the Orient.  I’d put my money on the LIAM bike being Martin’s Vandy bike.  Sam, III


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