5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

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SusanYaeger
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5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by SusanYaeger » Wed Jul 22, 2020 4:25 pm

The MTFCA Model T Museum is honored to now have the 5 Millionth Model T on display in Richmond for the next two years!

The Model T Coupe rolled off the Ford production line, with engine number 5,000,000, at 7:05 a.m. on 28 May 1921. It rolled into the Museum in Richmond on Saturday, July 18!

Thanks go to the Museum of American Speed in Lincoln, Nebraska; Clay Smith, President of Speedway Motors; and Tim Mathews, Curator of the Museum of American Speed for giving the MTFCA Model T Museum the opportunity to host this treasure.

Thanks to Mike Vaughn who transported 5Mil to Richmond. He also brought the 1909 Ford No. 2 Racer replica from Richmond to Lincoln where it will be on display at the Museum of American Speed.

Thank you, Milt Roorda, owner of No. 2 for allowing us to display it for the past year after returning from the 2019 Ocean to Ocean tour. It is another unique part of Model T history and Milt is gracious to share it with museums in different areas of the country so more people can enjoy it.

Seeing the 5 Millionth T is another good reason to come visit the Model T Museum. If you are planning a visit, phoning ahead to make a reservation is recommended since occupancy in the buildings is limited at this time, due to COVID restrictions. Phone 765-488-0026.

Photos courtesy of Ron Lecklider of Richmond
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5M and No 2 Cropped.jpg
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Henry K. Lee
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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by Henry K. Lee » Wed Jul 22, 2020 6:59 pm

WOW! How Cool is That!


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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by John S-M » Wed Jul 22, 2020 7:03 pm

Thanks for the GREAT news and wonderful pictures you posted :o :)


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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by Farmer J » Wed Jul 22, 2020 7:48 pm

Wow. What a great addition to all the many other new displays and areas opened since the first of the year. Sad to see old #2 gone. Some really great memories in that car last summer


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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by Arnie » Wed Jul 22, 2020 8:07 pm

I have a question with regards to the 5 Millionth Model T. The nomenclature on the door says 5 millionth Ford. Is it possible that this is not the 5 millionth Model T but the 5 millionth Ford?

Also with regards to the 15 millionth Ford that was a 1927 touring, it says 15th million Ford on the side, not 15 millionth Model T Ford. Please look at the Detroit news paper in 1927. I believe the news paper headline states 15 millionth Ford not 15 millionth Model T Ford. If it was indeed the 15th millionth Model T Ford would not the newspaper report it as such?

Also, when it came to the 20 millionth Ford it was a 1931 Fordor sedan. Now we all know that Ford Motor Company did not build 20 million Model A Fords! So for sure, in this case the 20 millionth Ford was not the 20 millionth Model A Ford!

Many years ago I wrote Bruce about this numbering and he said he was not sure!

Now, I am not saying that Ford did not make 15 million Model T Fords. I am just saying that based on the writings on the vehicles and the newspaper articles of the day, perhaps the numbers on the sides of the 5, 15 and 20 millionth vehicles, mean actually that: the 5 millionth, 15 millionth and 20 million Ford Motor Company made vehicles. Also when one looks at the motor numbers perhaps some completed engine/transmission combinations were used for service and not to make new vehicles. Those assemblies should not be counted in the number of vehicles built if they were used in already assembled vehicles for repair. If some engine transmission/assemblies were numbered and used for repair, engine numbers higher than 15 million would actually be needed to build 15 million Model T Fords (because of the ones numbered and used for repair of existing vehicles.)

On another topic, does anyone know for sure, when a block of engine numbers was sent out, were they always all used up before additional numbers were given out?

One last comment that makes me wonder: Somewhere, I do not remember where I got the impression that the vehicle with the 15th millionth Ford painted on the side was blue. Did anyone ever hear that? Or is the current color considered blue/green. What is interesting is Ford did have individual green and blue specified as colors for 1927. Color pictures were not available then and memories of people fade, and people pass away, so this information me be lost to us all!

Arnie

P.S. This probably does not make much difference as the number of days it took Ford to make 500 vehicles perhaps was in terms of days/weeks in 1903, but by 1927 it was only a matter of short time to make 500 vehicles. But it may be historically significant to keep the records straight.

What I am trying to suggest is that Ford Probably made the 15th million Model T Ford soon after the 15 millionth Ford, so time wise it probably does not mean much.

Perhaps it might have taken to much space to write "Model T" or "Model A" between the Millionth and Ford on the sides of the vehicles!

Does anyone know if the production numbers included world production, North America production or just the United States for later production vehicles?

So what do the experts have to say, before we loose more information?

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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by TWrenn » Wed Jul 22, 2020 8:30 pm

Purdy neat! This Tim Mathews guy...I believe there is/was a Tim Mathews associated with Mathews Ford/Lincoln right here in Sandusky, Ohio. Spelled the same way. Wonder if its him?


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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by ModelT46 » Wed Jul 22, 2020 10:35 pm

The touring 1927 Model T ford has motor number 15000000. There are pictures of Henry Ford stamping the number on the engine. It was done for the publicity. Perhaps several thousand or more engines were stamped with numbers, but not installed in cars. Early records for the Model T indicate after some engine numbers, "engine only". The 20,000,000 Model A that on loan to the Ford Company, is the original one and the engine is stamped 200000000. After this Model A was shown around the Us on a tour, it was sold to an employee. It was discovered about 10 years ago and the Ford Company determined it was the original one and restored it for the family. It is now on loan to Ford. There are three of four Model Ts that are claimed to be number 10,000,000.

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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by DanTreace » Wed Jul 22, 2020 11:18 pm

Great news on the 5 Millionth Ford to be in the MTFCA Museum.

As for the 15th Million, that is well documented as driven off the main factory for celebration, likely the # is correct in procession of mfg. of Model T engines. Ford did keep records! And that 15th Million was originally Gunmetal Blue with silver lettering. Later over the years, fixed up and repainted today in approx. Highland Green with white lettering. Complete article by curator of transportation, The Henry Ford, on this car in past Model T Times issue, May-June 2018.

And Model T production, the figures all represent Model T engine #s, and that is the basis for the running total to 15 million for the 'final' fanfare touring that was proclaimed. A few more trucks and cars likely were finished at various plants, adding to the final totals. Numbers include foreign mfg. plants.

Here are some fun reads from period magazines on the huge quantity of Model T's built over the period of years, ending with 15th Millionth.

1917 production  .jpg
Note above # of engines from 'inception' meaning the T engine.


Prod in 1923  .jpeg


And finally....the end of the line for Model T :cry:


15th million .jpg
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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by Arnie » Thu Jul 23, 2020 12:25 am

Dan:

I do not want to be difficult, but want to make sure the records are correct.

Your statement: "And the model T production, the figures all represent model T engine #'s, and that is the basis for the running total to 15 million for the "final" fanfare touring that was proclaimed", makes me think about the numbering of engine/transmission assemblies.

It is my understanding that if an engine was built without the crankcase or transmission, an engine number was not assigned to that engine. It might be shipped to a repair facility, and the plan was to stamp the number of the old engine in the new block that had a blank pad. The original engine was to have the original number "removed" so at any one time each engine had a unique number. So far so good.

Now my question to you Dan, was it possible that Ford assembled an engine and transmission and stamped it with a number and used it for repair of an older vehicle? I thought it was Ford practice to stamp engine numbers on completed engine assemblies. Also, were all the numbers that were sent out used completely? For example if some engine/transmission assemblies were used for repair then the numbers would need to be higher than 15 million for the 15 millionth Model T Ford vehicle made. Also, if not all the block of engine numbers that were given to various locations were not all used up, then again the 15 millionth Ford vehicle would have an engine number higher than 15 million. Production per day was a lot more units in 1927 than 1903. Therefore perhaps it was possible to determine when the 15th million vehicle would come down the Highland Park assembly line and put a symbolic 15 million number on the engine. As far as consecutive numbering, The Model A Ford of 1928 (made in 1927) started out again with 1, but ended up with 20 Million in 1931, so we know that Ford did not use the consecutive numbering of the Model A Ford to designate the 20 millionth vehicle. Perhaps when he was close to the 4,999,999 Model A Engine he used the next vehicle as the 20,000,000! This is just a guess on my part, as he would also need to account for any engines that were stamped with a number and used for repair rather than production vehicles. Ford or his people stamped a 1931 as the 20 million Ford, and that would be not the 20 millionth Model A Ford as we all accept the fact that he made around 5 million Model A Fords!

If I am in error in any of my thinking please let me know. I just want to know the truth about the Model T Ford.

Has the Blue color and silver lettering on the 15 million Ford been documented in any Ford literature or just the Model T Times magazine? Boy, I guess I am sounding like Original Larry!!! (buy the way Original Larry has some good points and have to respect him for wanting factory proof)

Arnie Johansen

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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by DanTreace » Thu Jul 23, 2020 9:52 am

Arnie

Sent you a PM to keep this thread about the new 5 Millionth on display at the club's museum ;)
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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by DanTreace » Thu Jul 23, 2020 12:33 pm

Back to the thread. Need to visit the museum again soon, last time I saw '5 Million' was on display at the Centennial in 2008.

5 million  .jpg
5,000,000.jpg
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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by RustyFords » Thu Jul 23, 2020 2:12 pm

Neat....another thing I'm adding to my "must see" list.
1924 Touring

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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by Steve Jelf » Thu Jul 23, 2020 2:54 pm

My question about #5,000,000: Is it a time capsule like the 1917 Rip Van Winkle, or has it been gussied up like #15,000,000?
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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by Mark Osterman » Thu Jul 23, 2020 4:13 pm

I was wondering the very same. Seeing the actual artifact would be really neat. But if it’s been restored ... it’s nice but not as Holy Grail like.

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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by DanTreace » Thu Jul 23, 2020 5:03 pm

That 5 million is of course restored, it got retired one would think, then sold off, and someone found it and knew it had special meaning. Glad it was saved.

15th million, got a lot of wear and tear, was used in promotions, and driven, so to keep it looking good of course it had makeovers, but is the real deal. At least it stayed in the hands of the Ford Museum, unlike many other key mfg. quantity milestone cars.

10th Million was shipped to NY, then driven across the country, coast to coast, stopping at Ford dealerships along the way, was driven by non other than Frank Kulick!

The famous 1931 Model A Town Sedan, special marked and stamped on block and frame as 20th Million Ford vehicle produced was celebrated in the press and in showings. But sometime in 1940 it got away from Ford Motor Co. Was found decades later, and then Ford worked with the family owners to restore it and lease it for the 2003 Ford shindig in Dearborn, saw it there.
The best way is always the simplest. The attics of the world are cluttered up with complicated failures. Henry Ford
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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by Erik Johnson » Thu Jul 23, 2020 6:05 pm

Google the club website with the term "5 millionth".

The car in question has be discussed at length a few times in the past starting back in 2007 when it was listed on eBay.

It reminds me of the 1934 Ford Bonnie and Clyde death car - all seven of them.........


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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by CraneJon » Thu Jul 23, 2020 6:25 pm

The five millionth T was restored by Sterling Heights Mich car collector Richard Duncan. It was in the Ford Collection at the Jerome Duncan Dealership for many years. My recollection is that it came from the Burroughs home, as in Burroughs office equipment. Dick always had a car under restoration in the back shop and assembled a very nice museum. The car sold at Auction when the museum liquidated. I visited the Speedster Reunion in Lincoln, took pictures and shared them with Dick, telling him that it ended up in the right place. Richard Duncan was a gentleman.

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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by George Mills » Thu Jul 23, 2020 6:32 pm

I'm not trying to be a troll, but the car apparently does have a 'past' as some others point out...and Ford apparently lost track of it into the public for upwards of 60 years.

Was a 'find' back in 92 after being lost for those years and when found had apparently lots of 'bitsy' 'Johnny Cash' parts but boy oh boy that engine said 5000000!

I would say 'let it be' whether it actually is or it isn't it is still representative of a benchmark car and can be a draw attraction. Its not like it has a 'For Sale' sign on it and we're helping the 'buyer beware'.

As a PS and having no direct read on this actual example...I am fairly sure I read somewhere in the past that on some earlier benchmark cars Ford actually changed the serial numbers to next available sequence number before 'retiring' them from marketing duty as he at that point didn't want things like this to happen? If true, I'd be pretty sure he changed his mind once Greenfield Village became his vision....


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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by Jerry VanOoteghem » Thu Jul 23, 2020 7:55 pm

I looked the car over pretty well before it was purchased by Dick Duncan, (who was a true gentleman as Jon Crane attests). It was in the front window of DuMouchelle's Auction House in Downtown Detroit. There were some items not correct for 1921 and some other inconsistencies as well. When Mr. Duncan restored it, he had those things corrected. Nothing horrible. Nothing to suggest that it wasn't truly 5,000,000, in my estimation. Just showed that there had been some "hands" on it over it's lifetime.

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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by Steve Jelf » Fri Jul 24, 2020 12:57 am

It reminds me of the 1934 Ford Bonnie and Clyde death car - all seven of them.........

I hear Daniel Boone's ax has had the head replaced three times, and five new handles. :D
The inevitable often happens.
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Re: 5 Millionth Model T Now at Model T Museum!

Post by Mark Osterman » Fri Jul 24, 2020 10:04 am

LOL .... Steve, we used a version of that joke in our medicine show years ago. We did a rain making routine and show a ground up pill in the air to salt the sky. I used a civil war era 58 cal Springfield rifle and as I showed it to the audience I said it was the very same weapon used by John Wilkes Booth when he murdered President Lincoln ... but that we spilled Lenape Liquid on the barrel which grew it to the “length you see it today” and we replaced the wood stock to maintain the correct proportions ... but that it occupied the same place as the original artifact.

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