Earth Day 2012 - Explore Alternative Energy Vehicle Exhibit at the AACA Museum
Hershey, PA (April 16, 2012). As we approach the 42nd Anniversary of Earth Day on Sunday, April 22, this is the perfect time to visit the Antique Automobile Club of America(AACA) Museum for our current featured exhibit Alternative Energy Vehicles. Earth day provides a launch pad to call attention to securing renewable energy, renewable energy technologies and improved energy efficiencies that will help sustain our planet into the future. Electric cars and hybrids are all the rage today with the movement toward a cleaner environment and the crippling cost of gasoline. What most people don’t know is that these technologies have been around as long as the automobile itself. In the car’s formative period, electricity went head to head with steam and the internal combustion engine as countless manufacturers competed for market share in this burgeoning new industry. From coal, to electric to steam and everything in between we’re showcasing the evolution of alternative fuel vehicles over the decades.
As part of this exhibit, we’re fortunate to have three vehicles by the same owner with an interesting story to tell. All three were driven cross-country by the same man, Mr. Raymond Carr. What also makes these vehicles interesting is that one is gas powered, one is steam powered and one is an electric car. Carr holds two Guinness Book of records for Oldest Auto Coast-to-Coast (1902 Northern), and Oldest Electric Auto Coast-to-Coast (1912 Baker Electric), as well as a World Record Oldest Steamer Coast-to-Coast (1909 Stanley Steam Car). Carr participated in the New London-to-New Brighton run six times in his 1902 Northern, by 1993, and completed the run three times. After the run was completed in 1993 Carr wanted a bigger challenge; cross country.
In 1994, at the age of 69, Raymond Carr drove his 1902 Northern from San Diego, California to Jekyll Island, Georgia. Carr affectionately named his Northern Chuffie. Carr and Chuffie drove the 2,488 miles, at an average speed of 20 mph. Chuffie a.k.a “The Silent Northern” can hold 2 passengers and is “silent” because of the single-cylinder, 5 horse-powered engine. Chuffie is believed to be the 41st vehicle produced by Northern, and is believed to be 1 of only 11 Northern Roundabouts in existences.
In 1996, Raymond Carr took to the road once again, in a 1909 Stanley Steam Car. Carr and his Stanley drove 5,200 miles from Anchorage, Alaska to Bar Harbor Maine. Carr was also a Goodwill Ambassador for the state of Pennsylvania, and helped raise money for the American Red Cross during this trip. This 1909 Stanley Steam Car appears like any other gasoline car of it’s time, but underneath it is powered by a steam boiler and a 2-cylinder engine. It also has the capability of going 70 mph!
These are just a few of the vehicles with a great story to tell so make sure to join us for this unique exhibit before in ends on May 27th. Exhibit vehicles include cars, trucks and even segways. Vehicles begin in 1899 and continue through 2012 and include the following: 1899 Crouch, 1902 Stanley Stick-Seat Runabout,1903 Northern,1908 Studebaker (congressional vehicle),1909 Stanley Steamer,1912 Rauch & Lang (Once owned by Thomas Edison) Electric,1912 Baker Electric,1930 Col. Green’s unique 1930 Stearns-Knight Hybrid,1938 Walker Dynamotive – Model 500 Gas/Electric Power Milk Truck, 1956 Coal-Powered Citroen,1976 Citi Car, 2012, and Segways
About the Antique Automobile Club of America Museum:
The Antique Automobile Club of America Museum, a member of the Smithsonian Institute Affiliations Program, displays beautifully restored automobiles, buses and motorcycles in unique life-like scenes representing the 1900’s – 1970’s in a cross-country journey from New York to San Francisco. The AACA Museum, a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization, is one of the nation’s newest and largest automotive museums. Special exhibits change several times a year and focus on a variety of eras and types of vehicles. The AACA Museum is located just off Route 39, one mile west of Hersheypark Drive in Hershey, Pennsylvania. Regular admission $10, seniors age 61 and older $9, juniors age 4-12 $7, children age 3 and under are FREE. The Museum is open daily from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and select evening hours during the summer months. For further information, please call 717-566-7100 or visit www.AACAMuseum.org .