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A Glorious 1&2 in Virginia

Posted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 2:40 pm
by oldcarfudd
Doug and Beverly Tomb ran the 2017 Eastern National One-and Two-Cylinder Tour last week in Orange, Virginia. It was their debut tour, they did it alone, and they did a spectacular job. There were 28 cars (including three Stanleys!) signed up, from Florida in the south, to Maine in the north, to Missouri in the west. The oldest, slowest, and rarest car was Jay and Carol Simpson’s 1901 air-cooled Crestmobile, which ran fine all week.

The host hotel was on a hilltop with ample trailer parking and an unobstructed view of the Blue Ridge mountains to the west. Fine weather allowed us to enjoy our social hours outside before moving indoors for the opening and closing banquets.
What a nice spot to start the party!
Bad news first – there was a serious accident. Jim and Peggy Vasel’s Brush had a steering failure, and the car hit a tree. The good news is that the car can be fixed. The better news is that the Vasels, despite having been thrown from the car, didn’t need fixing; they toured as passengers the rest of the week.

Monday’s 32-mile route was delightful; scenic views, rolling hills, winding roads, and about 4 miles of well-maintained gravel. We went to Montpelier, the estate of James and Dolley Madison. James was the principal author of the U.S. Constitution. He was also, like most prominent Virginians of the time, a slaveholder. The docents and video presentations try hard to balance these contrasting facets of his life. We were able to park our cars with the mansion in the background, and that’s where I took many of the car pictures you’ll see here.
Half our cars, with Montpelier in the background
And here's the other half
Andy Robeson's and Alex Joyce's Stanleys at Montpelier
Bono and Turner REOs
Bailey Maxwell, Hoagland Buick, Mathein Cadillac
A Model F Buick, Danzig Model 14 Buick, Simpson Crestmobile
Skip Carpenter's Buick - Steve Cook rode with Skip
Mike Romano's REO (prior owner Art Wilkinson rode with him) and Woolley Cadillac
On the way back, most of us drove Chicken Mountain Road, which included a half-mile of fairly serious unpaved uphill; those too chicken were given a bypass route. We had an ice cream social at a retirement community near the hotel; surprisingly, this was the only official ice cream stop all week. Ice cream shops seem to be scarce in central Virginia!
Ice cream social at the retirement home
Tuesday’s drive was longer; 53 miles. Lots of hills, a bit of gravel, plenty of scenery. Some folks in these parts build their churches with commanding views. We visited two of them, one for coffee and pastries in the morning and one for cider and apples in the afternoon.
Here's a pleasant spot for a cider stop.
Fitzhugh and Robeson Stanleys at the cider stop
Basel Brush (before the accident) and Bailey Maxwell at he cider stop
Lunch, with gourmet sandwiches and cookies, was at a winery. There is a serious effort to establish a wine industry in Virginia, with its own appellation. Though the effort is still rather young, the glass of wine I bought with lunch was very good indeed. Expensive, though – at 38 bucks, I declined to buy a bottle to take home. On the way back we stopped at the Roaring 20s Car Museum, where the cars looked as though they hadn’t roared (or even been washed) in many years.
I thought a poor woman's dream was a husband who did the laundry!
The evening’s activity was a lecture by Peter Jakab about the Wright Brothers; Peter, the curator of the Air and Space Museum at the Smithsonian, was enjoying his first tour with his recently-acquired Model G Buick.

Wednesday’s 56-mile drive was less challenging, all paved, and not as scenic, but the destination made it well worth while. After a coffee stop at a church, we went to Lake Anna State Park, where we had our own reserved pavilion, and from there to another fine catered lunch overlooking the lake.
Candy and David Staadt's 1905 Maxwell at the coffee stop
Jakab Buick and Mathein Cadillac at Lake Anna
Resting under our own reserved pavilion at Lake Anna
Alex Joyce takes his resting seriously!
Lunch stop at Lake Anna
That evening, Skip Carpenter told us about his book and map restoration business, and about the twists and turns of fate that led him and some of his employees into so unusual a profession.

Shortly after leaving on Thursday’s 45-mile ride, we stopped at a school to let the kids see – and, in some cases, clamber on and over – the cars.
Kids enjoying Skip Carpenter's Cadillac
Further down the road, we had an unusual coffee stop: a huge tree nursery with a café. And never mind coffee – this place had home-made ice cream! At 10 a.m.! Yes, I indulged. Life is uncertain - eat dessert first. We then visited the ruin of a home designed by Thomas Jefferson for his friend, the governor of Virginia; it burned down in 1884.
The ruins of a home designed by Thomas Jefferson
A nice spot to park at the ruin
Lunch was in the little burg of Gordonsville, at the BBQ Exchange. Most folks went to the local Civil War museum; I spent time with my stepdaughter and her kids, who had driven over from Waynesboro. They got a steam car ride. In the evening, Alex Joyce (whom we hadn’t seen on tour in years!) talked to us about Woodberry Forest School, where he had been both a student and a teacher. It’s a boarding school for boys on 1200 acres that used to belong to James Madison’s brother. Several folks drove their antiques to see it the next morning.

Friday’s 51-mile tour, beginning upon the return of those who went to Woodberry Forest, was an out-and-return run to lunch at a truly gourmet restaurant, surprisingly located in a strip mall. On the way, we had coffee at a church with extensive wooden decoration, including wooden pews with steam-bent backs.
Looking things over in the church parking lot
Inside the church. The backs of those pews are steam-bent wood.
On the way home, I believe no one took the optional detour to a Civil War battlefield where Stonewall Jackson’s arm is buried; I guess, in the South, that’s the equivalent of the European cathedrals that proudly display the finger bones of a saint. Much of the route was along the Rapadan River on a scenic, but dusty, gravel road. Upon his return, Steve Cook (a cunning perpetrator of unpaved “country lanes” on Brass and Gas tours) said: “You never thought you’d hear Steve Cook say he was glad to get back to pavement.”

And so, with another al fresco social hour, a farewell banquet, and a few awards and speeches, it was over. The Hoaglands have committed to doing next year’s 1&2 in New Hampshire, and the Simpsons will do the 2019 tour on the eastern shore. Meanwhile the Tombs, newbies no more, take their place among our most accomplished and successful tourmasters. Encore! Encore! (But, please, more ice cream.)

Gil Fitzhugh the Elder

Re: A Glorious 1&2 in Virginia

Posted: Fri Sep 29, 2017 7:01 pm
by oldcarfudd
The kids are in Skip's BUICK, not his Cadillac. Sorry 'bout that!