History on wheels: All Ford Show attracts cars and car lovers
SPENCER – Some people have had the abbreviation “FoMoCo” in their vocabulary for years.
New and old, stock and custom, Ford cars and trucks – and Ford fans – filled the field at the N.C. Transportation Museum on Saturday for the ninth annual All Ford Show.
Eighty-six vehicles were on display, according to organizers, representing just about every decade of the last 100 years.
The oldest: a 1911 Model T Torpedo Runabout, with kerosene lanterns for headlights.
The newest: customized Mustang GTs, shining as if they were fresh off the lot.
Dick Goho, volunteer with the N.C. Transportation Museum, said the event continues to draw attention from car-lovers – those who own Fords, and those who love to see them.
“People like the see the older cars, anything that’s original. You just don’t see ‘em anymore,” Goho said.
Several of the museum’s own vehicles, including a 1959 Edsel, were on display alongside the privately owned cars.
Another vehicle, which Goho said will soon be on loan to the museum, has some family history behind it.
Back in the 1950s, Cecil Evans Jr. said, his father owned a Shell service station in Lexington. Evans, who lives at High Rock Lake, said the late Cecil Evans Sr. once owned a pickup truck that went out on service calls.
After his father passed away in 2004, Evans said he wanted to restore a truck similar to the one he’d grown up with.
“Of course, the truck we used to have is long gone,” he said.
But the custom-painted 1954 Ford F100 that he’s restored is almost a dead ringer.
With wooden bedrails painted with the station’s original four-digit phone number, the Custom Cab F100 features the Shell Oil Company logo, just as the original truck did.
Evans said the truck, which had been parked in a garage for over 25 years, still had the original motor, transmission and radiator – all of which he’s retained.
In fact, the only big change he’s made is adding aftermarket turn signals.
“These young people don’t know what hand signals are. They think you’re waving to them,” Evans said.
Not only was Evans’ father a Ford fan, he said, but he would have been proud to see the truck on display at the Transportation Museum.
“He was a steam train buff,” Evans said.
On another part of the field, Tom Smith stood next to his Cobra kit car.
Smith, who grew up in Spencer but now lives in Salisbury, said he built the car as a project suggested by his friend.
After his wife passed away, Smith said, both men decided to build Cobras — sleek roadsters with Ford engines, modeled after the original Shelby Cobra designed in the 1960s.
These days, Smith said, they drive their Cobras to shows all up and down the east coast, and out to Ohio where a group of Cobra owners gathers every year.
Fellow Ford owner Howell Kesler, of Salisbury, walked up to the open hood of Smith’s Cobra to talk about modifications to the power plant.
For Kesler, who shows his Ford Thunderbird and has been taking Fords to shows for more than 30 years, the All Ford Show is a laid-back place to meet other car aficionados.
“I get to meet friends, nice people from all over the U.S.,” Kesler said, “people you wouldn’t see otherwise.”
More than that, Kesler said, the All Ford Show is a welcome change for those who may only go to shows focused on one model, or one timeframe.
“You get to see everything Ford created in its history,” Kesler said.
The N.C. Transportation Museum’s annual All GM Show is coming up next Saturday, Aug. 10.
The All MOPAR Show, sponsored by the Plymouth Car Club, follows on Saturday, Sept. 7. Then, the Antique Auto Club of America holds its show at the museum on Oct. 19.
Contact Fisher via the editor’s desk at 704-797-4244.