Model A’s, horse-powered farms at Vintage Day Sept. 2
The Door County Historical Society brings innovative automobiles — for their time, anyway — and old-school agriculture to its Vintage Day festival Sept. 2 for the next program in its Saturday Yesteryear series at Heritage Village at Big Creek.
The event includes a show by members of the Cherryland A's, the Ford Model A club of Door County, and a program on farming with horses by Bob Lohrey, who was born and raised on such a farm. Also, fried chicken dinners, ice cream floats and sundaes are available for purchase; advance orders are appreciated but not required.
Manufactured from 1927 to '31, the Model A represented Ford Motor Company’s second success, following the Model T which was long in the tooth and being surpassed in performance and public attention by most other cars by the mid-1920s.
Features included a 4-cylinder water-cooled engine that could hit around 65 mph, a fairly good top speed for the time, and some versions had fuel gauges, rear-view mirrors, and an aftermarket unit that provided heat to the cab. The Model A also was the first car to have a windshield made of safety glass. It also was available in a wide variety of styles and colors, a dramatic change from the Model T. Prices for the Model A ranged from $385 for a roadster to $1,400 for the top-of-the-line Town Car.
The Cherryland A’s are expected to have a 1929 pickup truck and a 1930 roadster among the cars on display.
Also on display will be the largest artifact in the society’s collection, a Studebaker Izzer buggy with an auto seat.
From 1890 to 1915, Izzer buggies were one of the most successful Studebaker designs, producing about 10,000 a year; the company could have sold more if it had the plant capacity. The name Izzer came from the story of a farmer who wanted to buy a new horse. Fed up with the nags that were paraded before him, the farmer said, “I don’t want a Wuzzer, I want a Izzer.”
Lohrey will share his experiences from his brother Dan’s farm in Rio Creek for “Farming with Horses – A Trip Down Memory Lane” at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. At this farm they continue to use horses for a major part of the field work. Much of the machinery used once belonged to their father and grandfather. Lohrey and his brother grew up with draft horses and “wouldn’t want it any other way."
As usual, guests also may explore the nine buildings at Heritage Village during the festival. Additionally, a docent will give tours of the Hanson Norwegian Homestead on East Utah Street from 10 a.m. until noon. And, the historical society opens its first-ever temporary exhibit, "Chenille Bedspreads: From Rummage to Treasure," in the Village Chapel.
Vintage Day runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sept. 2 at Heritage Village at Big Creek, 2041 Michigan St., Sturgeon Bay. Admission is $6 for adults. To pre-order chicken dinners or for more information, call 920-421-2332 or email Director.DCHistoricalSociety@gmail.com.