Cinderella's Coach

Lana Turner Chrysler

With over 175 cars on display at the Museum every day, it is hard to have a favorite. Some like the ornate, some the very old, others like the fastest. Each of us are entertained by the collection in our own unique way as we pass through the galleries of cars and displays. While touring the other day, I noticed one car in particular was absent. This can happen as cars are requested to appear outside the Museum, require service or are on loan to another museum.

Where was that gorgeous orange 1941 Chrysler Dual Cowl Newport that I was so used to seeing? With its orange exterior, it is easy to imagine a Cinderella in the separate seating area dressed for the ball. I was intrigued by the possibilities brought about by its absence. Three days and 2,800 miles later I had the answer. There we were on the fairway in Fernandina Beach, Florida waiting for the sunrise. It was the prestigious Amelia Island Concours display of Chrysler Concept Cars.

But wait, there’s more! It wasn’t enough that this car was one of just a handful of pre-war factory specials developed with the help of coach builder LeBaron, nor was it special because of its ownership by sportsman Bob Topping. No, today’s event was a very special reunion. The Newport was with a multitude of other Chrysler concept cars and the likeness of a former owner, Lana Turner!

Throngs of people gathered to witness the two stars together. Grace and pace united again. It was quite a nostalgic photo op. After a beautiful sunny day, Cinderella disappeared, the coach went away and a mystery was solved. Oh yeah, new mystery, how do I get back to Reno?

Story and photos contributed by Flat Tire Jack