blow the attic dust off that old relic — sometimes there's a geniune antique treasure hiding in plain sight

Shiny Paint & Polished Chrome

It seems as if cars have always been with us but the oldest are mere centenarians. Still, that’s 100 years of rich automotive history, and the trade in (and enjoyment of) older vehicles has never been healthier. Some antique cars have turned out to be better investments than paintings by Old Masters. A Dodge Hemi ’Cuda convertible that sold for a few thousand dollars in 1971 is now worth $2 million.

But investment is just one motivator. Collectors — mainly men, but some women, too — come in a variety of colorations. Some simply like tinkering with ancient sheet metal or rekindling old memories. Others enjoy the rich and varied show circuit in Fairfield County and beyond. And then there are the owners who get their pleasure from taking these old campaigners out on the road, where at gas stations and stoplights astonished onlookers invariably ask, “Hey, what year is that?” Just like those valuable old paintings, classic cars are usually pampered and treated to temperature-controlled living conditions. They live behind closed garage doors, so this article affords a rare opportunity to visit a few of our more outstanding specimens — and meet their affable owners, too.

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