Classic DREAMCARS Mount Dora, Fla. (352) 385-1945 www.classicdreamcars.com

            
                  
               
                       

            

      

         

(CLICK ON PHOTO TO ENLARGE)    
ALL PHOTOS TAKEN BEFORE RESTORATION AND ON DISPLAY IN THE MUSEUM WITH ORIGINAL PAINT. R/F/ INTERIOR WITH UNIFORM & CAP/ RESTORATION OPTIONAL.
   PROPS SHOWN NOT INCLUDED WITH SALE OF CAR... 

1948-49 CHEVROLET BARNETTE AMBULANCE 

 SORRY, YOU MISSED A REALLY UNIQUE, 'DOCUMENTED' CLASSIC...SOLD

We take great pride in searching for the rarest, low mileage classic cars…. each unique in story and manufacturer. This is another great example. Barnette Coach Company was one of a handful of smaller Professional Car builders located in Memphis, TN. They specialized in primarily Chevrolet and Pontiac extending the chassis to carry a custom made, channeled body. Originally called Guy Barnette and Co., reliable sources tell us that Barnette only made 17** of these unique Emergency Coaches from 1947-1955. It is also researched that only 3 other examples still exist…only one in Colorado even near  this condition. This Coach was ordered new by Susquehanna Coal Co. which morphed into Glen Burn Colliery (Coal Co.) in 1939. This coach was ordered as the 'Company Ambulance' dictated by specific mandate & order of the U.S. Bureau of Mines in 1948. Since the company enjoyed a pretty much 'excellent' safety record*for 134 years, and it was a short trip to the Shamokin State Hospital, this car today still only carries 9,400 original miles on the odometer in 65 + years, documented by full doc's and it’s original title… that’s unheard-of. It defies the term “mint condition” because it was stored in a heated garage, ready for service at a moments notice, yet according to the story, due to the Mine's stringent Safety Record, was seldom used except for mostly Parades. It has nearly all of its original “Battleship Gray” paint however, despite any sign of body rust, we felt it necessary to completely paint the car due to it's age. The entire Black Bucket Seats & Dark Blue "Spanish Grain" Interior and Partition Cabinet are original, even the Medical Cabinets which carry all their orig. 1948 implements & First Aid Gear (down to Lucky Strike Cigs). It is complete with it’s original Gurney, plus it even has orig.-style Grey Wool Blankets and Oxygen Equipment. Purchased by the 2nd owner in Nov.1994 when the Mines assets were liquidated, it only had 2,426 miles on the odometer at that time. He went completely through all the mechanics and cosmetics retaining the originality to the endth degree... finally removing the dated tires for safety reasons and replaced them with Coker Goodrich Specials. All Bright Work was, or has now been redone in NOS or show chrome. The original Linoleum Floor has been retained, as well as the original glass, door panels & headliner. We will endeavor to fully restore the car retaining as much originality as possible.

Though purchased new in 1948, it was titled in 1949, an acceptable policy at the time given the length of time for the custom build and late order date. The original Pull-Down Curtains survived to this day, as did all the Emergency Lighting, Siren and Radio Equipment. Power is by Chevrolet’s famous “Stovebolt Six” (1948 saw 'new' Improved Factory Main Bearings) w/ 3-on-the-tree Standard Transmission. All mechanical & cooling devices have now been refurbished or serviced to new, with all stainless parts & screws were either replaced with new or hand polished. Although Spartan, it carries factory options such as (2) Rearview Mirrors, H.D. Clutch, Oil Bath Air Cleaner, Full Chrome Grille (actually also Chevy option), F/Rear Heaters, Deluxe Cab w/ Bucket Seats & Woodgrain Dash & Sills, Upgraded Size Tires on orig. 16" Wheels, Aluminum “Ambulance” Signage (1+2), Chrome Hood Ornament (also a Option), Appleton E. Spotlight (upgraded red bulb added), L/R Armrest Delete, Cigarette Lighter delete, Back-Up Light, Orig. Fire Extinguisher , White Whitewall 'Porta-Walls', and Wheel Trim Rings. Will you see another one? Highly unlikely…. on display at the Mt. Dora Museum of Speed . SORRY SOLD and Delivered !!

 The Coachbuilder:

Guy Barnette and Co. was one of four Coachbuilders in Memphis who specialized in stretching the chassis and body on more economy priced cars like Chevrolet and Pontiac. The other Coachbuilders were Comet / Pinner, Barnett [no ‘e’], National Body Mfg., Economy Coach  & Weller Brothers. Barnette built Coaches from 1947 through 1955. Their most recognized moniker was “Custom Made Quality at Assembly Line Prices". Most of their Coaches were built with ‘suicide rear side doors’, however, at least one Barnette is known to have been built with front hinge doors. They also built Hearses, Flower and Service Cars for funeral companies that needed to transport not just caskets but, chairs, tent, flowers and the podium to the graveside. Barnette also specialized in higher-end custom built Pontiacs with the V8 but, were apparently driven out of business when Pontiac dropped the Sedan Delivery model from the line-up in 1955. All Chevrolet 'Barnette' Coaches were built on the extended "Stylemaster 'Advanced Design' Chassis and came complete with Gurney, Attendants Seat, Medical Cabinet, Rear Cabin Heater, Window Shades, 1 pc. Rear Door (touted 'to swing to the curb for safety'), Spare Mounted behind the Seat and All Steel Construction as standard equipment.  Barnette Coaches will best be remembered for offering a great alternative for small Funeral & EMS providers, that couldn’t afford the prestige of a Cadillac or Packard, not uncommon in small cities all across the USA.  

The Story:

The Glen Burn Colliery was a large anthracite Coal Mine in Shamokin, Northumberland County, Pennsylvania. No longer active, it is believed it was the largest, or 2nd largest, deep coal mine in the United States. It operated for 134 years and employed as many as 1,420. It mined 33,353,000 tons of coal and only had 217 fatalities (average about o.6 per year) Yet, our research showed nearly ALL fatalities were before 'regulation' in 1951. It began in 1836 as "Cameron Colliery", re-named "Shamokin Lower Gap Colliery" until 1889, then "Stevens Coal Co." until 1939. It was re-named "Susquehanna Coal Co." from 1939-1962 ( at the time this Coach was titled, 'Susquehanna' owned 13 Collieries). This mine was then finally changed to 'Glen Burn Colliery'. Acquired in the 60's by Kerris-Herrick it operated until a Union Strike forced it out of business in 1984. It covered an amazing 5,823 acres of coal land including both sides of the Susquehanna River. The majority Stock holder for many years was The Pennsylvania Railroad and Canal Co. who already had assets of 9 million dollars by 1918. It had several ‘drifts’ or tunnels which stretched for miles underground. Stories conflict, even amongst those that worked there, just how many levels there were but, it is known main haulage occurred on both the Shamokin side and the Trevorton side. Today the lower levels are completely flooded almost up to the main haulage level. Looking into the utter blackness of the water gives one a very eerie feeling that cannot be described. Word also has it, by an employee, that there were rooms hidden from mining inspectors, which were so large you could turn a tractor trailer around inside of them without backing it up. Supposedly, a rather large dinosaur fossil was found in the lower levels and preserved by Penn State University.

There was a short time the mine was opened to the Public back in the 1960’s. The idea was conceived by an industrial-oriented group known as the Lower Anthracite Regional Economic Development Organization to offer a ‘tour’ through a working coal mine. The plan was to take tourists on an ‘educated trip’ through 2 miles “into the bowels of the earth to see the complex duties of the miners and the equipment used preparing fossil fuel for home and business use". Large Billboards were ordered and then posted all around the Shamokin area, while specially constructed underground mining cars were built, with electric trolley-like construction, to carry passengers (see photos below). This plan materialized around 1964 and gained State and National recognition though a well planned Public Relations and Advertising Campaign. It was touted as being incredibly unique, down to even manning the rides with Certified Mine Foremen and retired workers acting as tour guides but, it only lasted a short time. Problems arose with, not only the high cost of operation but, the need for renovations in key staging areas in order to meet Federal and State Safety Regulations. Finally, a stake was driven into the heart of the operation by the huge premiums necessary for liability insurance and the attraction closed just a few months after being formally opened. Today, nearly all of the Glen Burn Colliery has been dismantled and/or blocked-off. Hours of research have provided some great photo’s, for your entertainment, of not only the Glen Burns Coal Mine but, of life in the vintage hometown of Shamokin, PA.

 

Sources: Shamokin News-Dispatcher, **Walter McCall, PCS, Ancestry.com, Flicker.com, Coachbuilt.com, Stu Beiter, and the ‘Evening Standard’, Uniontown, PA 2/27/64 – "3 Killed in Shamokin Mine Blast",, "SHORTAGE OF COAL' Senate Hearings; 1918, PHMC.StateCoalCo."Fall & Decline", "Rise & Fall of PA. Collieries", books.google.com, U.S.Gov. "Northeast Filed Operations Report; 1936" and article online named "The Forgotten Coal Industry". .  

                                 

                                      

                                                  

       

                               

PHOTO'S  TOP ROW ARE THE GLEN BURN MINE TOUR 'TROLLEY' CARS BEFORE & AFTER, AND THE SHORTLIVED 'GLEN BURN MINE TOUR' BILLBOARDS BEFORE & AFTER,

2ND ROW: PHOTO OF THE COLLIERY IN IT'S GLORY DAYS AND  THEN, JUST BEFORE DISMANTLING. 

3RD ROW: ORIGINAL B & W PHOTO'S OF LIFE AT THE GLEN BURN COLLIERY AND IT'S HOMETOWN - SHAMOKIN, PA.

4TH ROW: ORIGINAL COAL MINERS HELMET, MINERS POSING AT MAIN BUILDING, COAL TRAIN 'FUELING' UP, "THE TOOL HOUSE" AND THE STATE HOSPITAL AT SHAMOKIN

5TH ROW: LIFE INSIDE THE MINE- TYPICAL TUNNEL AND COAL MINERS CELEBRATE MINING 108 YARDS IN 4 1/2 DAYS, THE WORLDS TALEST MAN MADE MOUNTAIN (OF COAL), DELIVERY TRUCK IN SHAMOKIN

         

              

THIS ROW OF PHOTO'S: SHOWS THE DOCUMENTATION WITH THIS CAR. FIRST PIX ORIG. COLOR CHIPS WITH RARE BARNETTE SHOWROOM BROCHURE FOR THE AMBULANCE AND HEARSE LINE

SECOND PIX: INSIDE OF BROCHURE, THIRD PIX: ORIG. DEALER LETTER SPELLING OUT COSTS FOR AMBULANCE MODEL AND THE FOURTH PAGE OF THE BROCHURE,

4TH PIX: COPY OF ORIG. TITLE, STEERING WHEEL 'BUCK', BARNETTE FLYER, OWNERS MANUAL, CHEVY SERVICE POLICY AND SOME OF THE ORIG. INSURANCE CARDS AND REGISTRATIONS FOR THIS COACH.