David Watts, Jr.

Photographer-Filmmaker-Historian

Collings Foundation - Wings & Wheels / American Elegance

For a number of years, the Collings Foundation had only one annual living history event on the property that was open to the public. Originally called Wings and Wheels, it was a chance for the public to view the collections in the barn and hanger. American Elegance, added in 2012, is a tour through motorcar development, now, from 1904 to 1940 with up to a dozen beautiful examples of classics in running condition.

Visitors tour through the American-built motorcar collection in the barn.

Retired Massachusetts State Police officer John H. "Jack" Crawford with the 1941 Ford Cruiser from the Massachusetts State Police Museum and Learning Center in Grafton, MA

Collings Foundation co-founder, Bob Collings, conducts a docent tour of the lower level of the hanger. Behind him are the 1909 Bleriot Model XI monoplane and Grumman / Eastern Aircraft TBM-3 Avenger torpedo bomber.

Out of the barn and lined up for American Elegance are (r to l) 1927 Rolls Royce Springfield Phantom I Phaeton, 1930 Cord Model L-29 Convertible Coupe, 1931 Studebaker President, 1931 Chrysler CG Imperial LeBaron, 1932 Duesenberg SJ Dual-Cowl Phaeton, 1937 Cord Model 812 Phaeton

1904 Franklin Type A Roadster driven by CF Executive Director and Chief Pilot Rob Collings, accompanied by his son, Robert. The motor car is followed by the 1908 Cadillac Open Roadster Runabout.

Three examples of Brass Era motorcars ... (l to r) 1901 Oldsmobile Curved Dash, 1904 Franklin Type A Roadster, and 1908 Cadillac Open Roadster Runabout.

1914 Stutz Bearcat


1924 Ford Model T

1922 Ford Model T


1927 Rolls Royce Springfield Phantom I Phaeton, built in Springfield, MA; body by Brewster & Co., Long Island City, NY.

1927 Rolls Royce Springfield Phantom I Phaeton

1928 Chrysler Model 72 Roadster

1931 Studebaker President

1931 Studebaker President

1931 Chrysler CG Imperial LeBaron

1932 Duesenberg SJ Dual-Cowl Phaeton. This car was originally owned by Frederick S. Duesenberg.

1935 Packard Model 1208 Convertible Sedan

1935 Packard Model 1208 Convertible Sedan

1937 Cord Model 812 Phaeton

1937 Cord Model 812 Phaeton

1940 Cadillac V-16 limousine originally owned by Al Capone.

1940 Cadillac V-16 limousine originally owned by Al Capone.

1940 Cadillac V-16 limousine originally owned by Al Capone.

1940 Cadillac V-16 limousine originally owned by Al Capone. Elliott Ness and the State Trooper free Capone's accountant with the evidence to convict Capone on tax evasion.

1940 Cadillac V-16 limousine originally owned by Al Capone. Elliott Ness and the State Trooper free Capone's accountant with the evidence to convict Capone on tax evasion.

1940 Cadillac V-16 limousine originally owned by Al Capone.

Boeing Stearman PT-17 biplane trainer takes off from the grass airstrip behind (l to r) 1935 Packard Model 1208 Convertible Sedan, 1931 Chrysler CG Imperial LeBaron, 1931 Studebaker President, 1930 Cord Model L29 Convertible Coupe, 1927 Rolls Royce (Springfield) Phantom I Phaeton

© 2007 - 2020 David Watts, Jr. Photographer-Filmmaker-Historian