The Smithsonian Institution's collection of treasures extends far beyond what's actually on display in its D.C. museums. Ranging from ancient artifacts to modern marvels, this bit is likely to interest automotive enthusiasts more than any other:
The National Museum of American History is preparing to put two of the most historically significant American automobiles on display from its archives. But instead of letting the curators pick the cars, they're asking the public to vote in a campaign it paradoxically calls "Race to the Museum."
The candidates include a 1903 Oldsmobile Curved Dash Runabout (the first car built on an assembly line in the U.S., well before the Ford Model T); an 1880 steam-powered trike built in Massachusetts; an 1894 Blazer (the first American-made automobile to hit New York City, built by a Tiffany-trained watchmaker); a 1948 Tucker (pioneering many advanced safety features and the subject of the 1988 Jeff Bridges film); a 1929 Miller supercharged Indy race car, which set a 143 mph speed record and prompted Detroit to press race organizers to ban superchargers; a 1953 Glasspar fiberglass sports car and two modern examples of green propulsion from General Motors: the EV1 and the 1987 Sunraycer solar-powered prototype.
So far the Tucker is in the lead, with the Miller and the Olds in a close race for the second slot. Follow the link to get your vote in before January 11, 2011.
[Source: Smithsonian via The Detroit News]