Thirty Speed Records Set by Harley-Davidson at Daytona Beach in 1920

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  • Harley-Davidson riders with an 8-valve racing machine and a Bullet Sidecar

In February of 1920, the Harley-Davidson racing team descended on Daytona Beach, Florida with a number of its racing machines and their star riders intent on setting the record books on fire. There they set up camp during the second week of the month and by the time it was over, the effort had set thirty world’s records. Expert riders Leslie Red Parkhurst and Fred Ludlow can be seen above posing with a Harley-Davidson 8-Valve racing machine and the newly-designed Bullet Sidecar rig that they used to set five records with.

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The pair set a new five mile record with an average speed of 87.52 m.p.h. and on the same run they set four more records in the sidecar class at the 1 kilometer, 1 mile, 2 mile and 3 mile marks. Without the sidecar, Parkhurst set a record of 111.98 m.p.h. with the machine in the kilometer and also set records at one, two and five-miles. The photos are courtesy of Harley-Davidson, and the period magazine article is courtesy of David Morrill. Learn more about the runs at Harley-Davidson. 

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Posted in Motorcycle photos | Tagged , , , , , , |

Plans for the Packard Plant Move Forward

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  • Image from drone camera coverage courtesy of Detroit Drone.

According to a report from the Detroit Free Press yesterday, Fernando Palazuelo the new owner of the Packard Plant complex is moving ahead with his plans to clean up the industrial remains. He is starting within the next few weeks to clear up debris and broken concrete around the old Packard administrative office building and the red brick bridge that crosses East Grand Boulevard.

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  • Photo of the Packard Plant and bridge in the 1950s

After the initial clean up, his plans call for restoring the original four-story Packard Office Buildings and the brick bridge that crosses East Grand Boulevard. He has retained Albert Kahn Associates, the company that designed the original buildings to handle all of the architectural details.

Palazuelo plans on restoring some of the original structures and redeveloping the area for both commercial and cultural uses. He is hopeful that tax credits will be obtainable for preserving the historic site and brownfield clean-up assistance will also help with some of the funding. Plans for the rest of the site are unclear, but the developer has mentioned that a second phase will come later.

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  • Packard Plant Number Ten under construction circa 1910.

We have not found any mention yet as to what will be the fate the remaining buildings on the complex that are crumbling and mostly well beyond any repair. We are hopeful his efforts are successful and a least a portion of the once famous facility can be saved. See our earlier coverage from last year where you can see an amazing video taken by a drone cam here. You can also learn more at the Detroit Free Press. The photos from the Rod Blood Collection are courtesy of The Larz Anderson Museum.

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Posted in Out Of The Box | Tagged , , , , , |

Classic Cars and Models in the California Sun

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We do not know the reason why either of these mid-to-late twenties photos were taken, but it is likely that they were used for promotional purposes. The Packard Phaeton image above may have been taken for a Packard dealer or possibly for the Company itself. Note the two-tone wheels.

The Marmon below with a model pointing at the front suspension may have been used to bring attention to some new feature. If you can date and tell us the model of either car please let us know. The photos are courtesy of the USC Libraries.

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Posted in Auto photos 1921 - 1942, Women and Vehicles | Tagged , , |