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Packard Cache & University Motors, Lawrence, Kansas
Home away from home
Joined:
2007/11/18 9:02
From Dalton, NY
Posts: 696
Hi

The following information was forwarded to me about a cache of Packard in Lawrence, Kansas and subsequently information from Mr, Nick Schmiedeler recently.

My name's Nick, and I live in Lawrence, KS. Found your website online
>here - just curious if anyone has ever tipped you onto the
>"urban-Lawrence Packard graveyard"*
>**
>*.........there is a home in the middle of downtown, at 1100 Rhode
>Island, across from the Lawrence Police Station, and it was abandoned
>long ago.......far as I could guess, I'd say at least 25 or 30 years,
>maybe more. I'm probably not the best contact on this information, but
>I've heard varied accounts as to why this beautiful double-lot in the
>middle of a primo-real-estate neighborhood has not been cleaned up or
>bought. One account says an old man used to run an automotive shop
>there, (there's still a sign on one of the buildings that says
>"University Motors" or something, way up high), and when he died, there
>was a tift with the rest of the family and the city, and they just
>refuse to have it developed. *
>**
>*Anyway, the backyard area has a 6' fence that surrounds everything, and
>if you peak in, you can make out, parked bumper to bumper, about 3 or 4
>rows of 3 to 4 Packards each, so that'd be what...........9 to 16 or so
>Packards? Best as I can tell, they are ALL Packards, and with some
>research, look like Clippers, at least most of them. Varied models of
>Clippers, but all in all, average to good shape I'm guessing - some
>rust, flat tires, etc. But also a very tall pile of bumpers right by
>the fence - Packard bumpers? I would guess. Very hard to see inside
>there really.*
>**
>*This may not be news to you at all, but if you're interested, and you
>know there are people that would be interested in these cars, I could do
>a little research in the city offices and see who exactly owns the lot,
>and connections might be made. I don't know how cooperative these
>people may be, but there it is - a tip on some Packards sitting idle for
>what looks like a long, long time.*
>**
>*Please let me know one way or another if you might be interested in
>this - I do like researching the history of our fair city, and I'm sure
>I could pass on some new discovered info if anyone is interested. *
>**
>*Take care, Nick S. in Lawrence, KS.*

The University Motors information:

- University Motors (and their repair shop) - the Packard dealer - was only ever located at 707 New Hampshire. First phone book listing for University Motors at their one and only location ever - May, 1949. Last listing, December, 1963. So, University Motors, only ever listed as a Packard dealer with no other car maker sales, ran at 707 New Hampshire from 1949 to 1963, according to the city directories and phone books. So my guess about them re-locating or having some other arm of their company operations at the site we visited - 1106 Rhode Island, is incorrect. That's simply the location that all unsold/broke-down or other Packards ended up after the '63 closing probably - and have been ever since I'm guessing - 47 years now.

- Interesting side-notes about the 707 New Hampshire dealership location (currently a downtown parking lot) - phone book listings for that address -
* 1945 - Bodin Nash Automobile Sales (one year only)
* 1946 - 1948 - Lawrence Willys Automobile Sales (3 years only)

Now some more BIG NEWS - previous to May, 1949 with the introduction of University Motors Packard sales, there had been at least 2 OTHER PACKARD DEALERS !!!! Again, all this taken from city directories and phone books -

* Kraft and Starr Co. Packard Sales - 1818 Massachusetts, in 1947 (one year only) - that space is now a liquor store. In 1946, Kraft and Starr is listed as a Agricultural Implements supplier company, and in 1948, it's not listed at all.

The Lawrence Library has no directories prior to 1930 and the city directories get pretty sketchy for all the 1930's - several years are missing, but the 1933 and 1936 directories both list : * Reusch Motor Co. Packard Sales at 737 New Hampshire - now a restaurant space, used to be called "Red Hot Garage" in the 1980's - it has a garage door on it and old cement floors - obviously an old mechanics/showroom garage.

If anyone would like to contact Nick Schmiedeler directly, I can forward this email address.

Someone in the area familiar with this cache?

Steve

Posted on: 2010/7/25 7:47
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Re: Packard Cache & University Motors, Lawrence, Kansas
Home away from home
Joined:
2008/11/28 17:50
From Calgary, AB Canada
Posts: 555
In the early 90's, the grandson of the original owner was advertising and selling the remaining stock of NOS parts from the dealership under the name of University Motors. I bought a number of these parts and picked up some of them directly when on my way to pick up a 1956 Packard 400 from Wesley Sylvester in Ottawa, Kansas. The Grandsons name was Doug Barland and he showed me some cars that were left from his grandfathers estate, including a very rusty 1956 400. These could very well be the same cars mentioned by Nick. Details are a bit fuzzy now but I do recall that the cars were stored in a private yard.

Posted on: 2010/7/25 23:05
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1949 Custom 8
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Re: Packard Cache & University Motors, Lawrence, Kansas
Home away from home
Joined:
2007/11/18 9:02
From Dalton, NY
Posts: 696
Hi

I received this email today from Nick Schmiedeler regarding the disposition of the cache of Packards in Lawrence, Kansas: Nick's email is nccg@sunflower.com

"I contacted a Brian Barland today, who is the son of the man that started University Motors and currently has a hand in ownership of the 1106 Rhode Island property here in Lawrence, and all the cars. He was an unknown in the whole connect-the-dots equation - he was referred to me by an architect friend of mine that said he's dealt with Brian before in reality in downtown Lawrence.

Brian said he is ABSOLUTELY INTERESTED IN SELLING THE CARS - I am going to meet with him in the next few days hopefully to discuss the details. I do know that he mentioned about 5 - 10 years ago he tried to contact the Packard Club of KC to sell the cars, but received no response. He also said he would be interested in selling the cars as WHOLE PURCHASES - as opposed to piecing them out right there in his lot and leaving an even bigger mess. I think what he's getting at is he'd like the cars hauled off (one by one or whatever), and at the right price - it sounds like he understands that they are just about complete, and would be great refurbish jobs, or parts cars, for the right people.

Our conversation included telling him honestly everything that we've done so far - I told him we've been on the property, been in the buildings (because we saw "open doors"), and were only there to photograph and document everything for hopefully, a potential sale someday - he was fine with all that. I told him my only personal interest was being a middle man of sorts, helping recognize the history of the place, and saving the cars and parts and other salvageable materials on the property from being demolished, and emphasized we are not interested in purchasing the property itself, or developing it in any way - "it's all about the cars and the junk". Again, he was fine with that.

Once I meet with him soon I will tell you exactly what he has to say. Please let me know if you've received this email, give me your thoughts, and tell me honestly if you can picture Packard folks showing up to take these cars away - I think that's what he'd like the most.

Thanks Steve, feel free to pass this along to anyone you'd think would be interested. Again, I'll update you with whatever he has to tell me soon. Oh, and I believe he'd be able to tell me exactly the year and model of all the cars there - this might help the interest of some of your club members."

And from another quick note today:
"This could be the lot of a lifetime - I believe there are 16 cars total, including a convertible or two, plus I will talk to him about the parts in the garage - they may go for sale also?"

I hope you guys in the region will contact Nick about these cars. Can anyone in the region meet with him sometime soon and help identify what years and models are in this cache?

Steve

Posted on: 2010/11/4 16:22
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Re: Packard Cache & University Motors, Lawrence, Kansas
Home away from home
Joined:
2008/1/17 7:25
From Racine, WI
Posts: 1045
I tried to be slick and used Google Earth to get a top down view of the property, but the cars appear to be covered by trees. I think I can make out one car, but the resolution is too poor.

Attach file:



jpg  packard cache.jpg (55.18 KB)
508_4cd34ef923acd.jpg 1030X594 px

Posted on: 2010/11/4 17:18
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Re: Packard Cache & University Motors, Lawrence, Kansas
Forum Ambassador
Joined:
2007/1/10 19:12
From Deee-troit
Posts: 1012
Try this, there's a crapload of cars there.


http://www.bing.com/maps/#JnE9LjExMDA ... 4OSU3ZS0xMjcuODM4NjUzNTY0

go to 'AERIAL" then select "BIRD'S EYE VIEW" and rotate.

Posted on: 2010/11/4 22:24
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Re: Packard Cache & University Motors, Lawrence, Kansas
Home away from home
Joined:
2006/5/29 19:02
From Kansas
Posts: 3707
Looks like there's a nice tall fence all the way around it to block prying eyes...

Also, it looks like my place up at my mom's house, lol!

Posted on: 2010/11/4 22:33
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Re: Packard Cache & University Motors, Lawrence, Kansas
Forum Ambassador
Joined:
2007/1/10 19:12
From Deee-troit
Posts: 1012
I'll bet the neighbors and the son would like to see all of that gone.

Posted on: 2010/11/5 5:59
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Re: Packard Cache & University Motors, Lawrence, Kansas
Just popping in
Joined:
2010/11/5 11:28
From Lawrence, KS
Posts: 1
Indeed. I hope everyone understands what an incredible opportunity this may be - there are 16 complete or near-complete 40's/50's Packards back there, and I've been witness - lots of rust and a ton of TLC needed, but many still have original tires and hubcaps - these babies are ready for restoration. I'll keep the forum updated on what the meeting presents.....should be very interesting.

Posted on: 2010/11/5 19:35
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Re: Packard Cache & University Motors, Lawrence, Kansas
Quite a regular
Joined:
2007/7/12 20:27
From Kansas City, Missouri
Posts: 45
I am curious about this meeting and its results, if it has taken place yet. I am in the "Kansas City Packard Club" aka Mid-America Packards. I'm not sure who the contact was (mentioned in the first post of the thread), but I would say no one has tried very hard to contact MAP, unless it is the nice gentleman that did talk to us, and met with us. (If you are reading this, my hat is off to you for the efforts) All of us are interested in the disposition of the cars and parts, whatever may be there. But it was unclear (to me) just who owns what, and who has the right to dispose of the property. It sounded to me like there was still a family dispute over how to handle it, and until that is resolved, I didn't see any way to proceed.

Posted on: 2010/12/3 12:20
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