1920 car on display at Montgomery Museum

Published: Jan. 27, 2023 at 2:51 PM EST
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CHRISTIANSBURG, Va. (WDBJ) - There’s a new ride parked in the Montgomery Museum of Art and History.

“It starts and it runs,” car owner Jackie Shelton said. “Sometimes it’s a little cantankerous to get it in gear.”

She’s the owner of a 1920 Maxwell. The car has been in Montgomery County since it was first purchased by Ed McDaniel. Shelton and her late husband Bob Shelton bought the car in the ‘80s.

“From that time, he decided, ‘I need to make this car back like it was original,’” Shelton said.

When the Sheltons first purchased the car, it was missing the back portion, because McDaniel used it as a truck on his farm.

To get it restored to original condition, Bob Shelton put an ad in Hemmings Magazine. That led to someone in California connecting Bob with a man in Minnesota who had the missing piece.

“We hooked a little trailer the back of our car and went out to Austin, Minnesota and that man had this back end with the upholstery, the seat, everything except the doors,” Shelton said.

The car has won multiple awards from some of the biggest shows on the east coast, but now it’s parked on display for all to see at the Montgomery Museum.

“Maxwells are fairly rare as as a breed and is extremely rare to have a local car,” Montgomery Museum Curator Sherry Wyatt said. “This was a Montgomery County automobile. It’s been in Montgomery County virtually its entire life, and so that part of its history, and its connection to the Shelton family, is extremely rare.”

“In my time here at the museum and also what I’ve seen of other museums, this is one of the cooler things that I have ever been able to be a part of,” Executive Director of the Montgomery Museum Casey Jenkins said.

The car will be on display starting February 2, with an open house event at the museum from 5-7 p.m.

“Bob passed away in 2020 and he was never one to do really try to show it off but he did like a parade,” Shelton said. “I think he would be pleased at the museum wants to show it off.”

The Feb 2. open house is free and open to the public.