Mar 13 2012

Mineola Patch: Local Historian Buys One-of-a-Kind 75 Year Old Chrysler Imperial

Reporter Christopher Collora interviewed Stephanie Gress, Director of Curatorial Affairs at the Suffolk County Vanderbilt Museum, two classic car experts and me for this Patch article and video:


Mineola Patch- March 11, 2012 By Christopher Collora

Local Historian Buys One-of-a-Kind 75 Year Old Chrysler Imperial

North Hempstead Historian Howard Kroplick plans to restore and show the car around Long Island.

Town of North Hempstead Historian Howard Kroplick recently outbid several interested car buyers for a rare 75 year old 1937 Chrysler Imperial being sold by the Vanderbilt Museum in Centerport. The one-of-a-kind car was commissioned by Walter Chrysler himself for his daughter.

Kroplick, who is widely known for his historic 1909 race car “The Black Beast” which he often shows around town at car shows and historic events, had the winning bid at $275,000. Professional appraisals estimated the car to be worth as much as $307,750.

The car itself was donated to the museum in 1959 and was never part of Vanderbilt's original collection, so the museum was able to de-accession it and sell it as a means of raising funds to care for Vanderbilt's artifacts.

The car will still need a proper restoration, a process Kroplick says he is looking forward to and plans to then tour the car around Long Island to share it with the public. Check out the video to see what Kroplick and car experts had to say about restoring the car.

The Vanderbilt Museum is calling this a win for everyone involved since the car will stay on Long Island and be shared with the public and the money raised will care for the Vanderbilt Museum artifacts for years to come. Kroplick says now with the Black Beast and this Chrysler Imperial, he has two truly unique cars in his collection.



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Mar 18 2012 H. Robert Greenbaum 2:30 PM

Hesh, you are so The Man.  Congrats on the new Leviathan.  I love it.
Bonham’s ran a full page ad in NYT today of a BMW 507 for low seven figures. 
Not too shabby.  Golf this summer for sure.

Mar 18 2012 Roger Price 5:34 PM

I could hear the excitement in your voice.  I’m glad that Walt Gosden had a chance to look at it.  Many people are looking forward to seeing that car.

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