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Chicago Fires

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Old 09-03-22, 06:08 PM
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Default Chicago Fires

Understood and appreciated on the other post but let's keep communication open so people learn about these cars.

On another note. This is very interesting - it is an article about the Chicago Fires of which there was not one but TWO! I know a lot of people have asked me in the past about how many cars were damaged in the fire. These notes were taken in period by Dennis Schue.

Since all Arnolt-Bristols were delivered to the Warsaw location in 1954 and titled as they were sold this is an amazing amount of cars unsold in 1957. Considering there were only 142 built.
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Old 11-03-22, 12:43 AM
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Default S.H. Arnolt warehouse fires

Just a little clarification. All of the cars indicated as destroyed in these 2 warehouse fires were not Arnolt-Bristols. Our records indicate that 12 Arnolt-Bristols were destroyed or badly damaged. The chassis numbers are 3037, 3081, 3113, 3117, 3122, 3125, 3126, 3129, 3130, 3132, 3135, and 3139.

The remains of 3132 still exist, and it might possibly be restored.
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Old 11-03-22, 01:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Simmons View Post
Just a little clarification. All of the cars indicated as destroyed in these 2 warehouse fires were not Arnolt-Bristols. Our records indicate that 12 Arnolt-Bristols were destroyed or badly damaged. The chassis numbers are 3037, 3081, 3113, 3117, 3122, 3125, 3126, 3129, 3130, 3132, 3135, and 3139.

The remains of 3132 still exist, and it might possibly be restored.
Thank you for the clarification John. In 1957 the Arnolt Company had a fire and 60 foreign cars were destroyed (the building was gutted according to the article) and in 1963 (what bad luck!) the Arnolt Company lost 25 foreign cars and trucks - in the very same building in another fire.

How does the description of 3119 fit into the equation?

Also do you have anything in the records about the car being the first coupe? I have never heard that story. Would love to see the first hand account from the records.

The newsletter is from Feb. 1978
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File Type: jpg Newsletter Feb 1978.jpg (153.1 KB, 9 views)
File Type: jpg 3119 Lee Raskin Registry (1).jpg (137.0 KB, 6 views)

Last edited by Cargirl; 11-03-22 at 01:55 AM.
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Old 11-03-22, 01:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Simmons View Post
Just a little clarification. All of the cars indicated as destroyed in these 2 warehouse fires were not Arnolt-Bristols. Our records indicate that 12 Arnolt-Bristols were destroyed or badly damaged. The chassis numbers are 3037, 3081, 3113, 3117, 3122, 3125, 3126, 3129, 3130, 3132, 3135, and 3139.

The remains of 3132 still exist, and it might possibly be restored.
John just a quick check of one page of Lee Raskin's Registry and both 3119 and 3116 are listed as being in the Chicago fire but they are not on that list.
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Old 12-03-22, 07:01 PM
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Yes there were 2 fires, 1957 and 1963. The 12 cars that I listed were destroyed in the 1963 fire. We have multiple records attesting to that. I do not claim 100% certainty, but that is what the records we have show.

We have no records regarding the 1957 fire, but that 3119 was in the 1957 fire is doubtful. It would be too late of manufacture based on chassis sequence. The listing in the Lee Raskin registries is based on letters that Dick Braund sent to me in 1977, which I had quoted in my newsletter. Dick based this claim on the condition of the car. Dick also said in his letter that there were 12 cars in the Chicago fire, so he was also basing this on his knowledge of the 1963 fire.

3116 is listed in the last 2 Lee Raskin registries as destroyed, but does not say by what means. I have no additional knowledge.

That 3119 was originally built as a Coupe is highly doubtful. I will not go into the analysis in this reply due to space, but will be glad to discuss it further if anyone desires that.
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Old 17-03-22, 03:28 AM
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It can be very difficult to establish the facts about events that ocurred 60+ years ago in the absence of official/verifiable information from the source, which in this case would be S.H Arnolt Inc. or Wacky himself, or perhaps his insurers.

One cannot necessarily rely on writers, journalists, amateur sleuths or enthusiasts.

The early history of Bristol cars is an excellent example. There are 3 or 4 different accounts in published books of Bristol's relationship with the Aldington brothers, what they got up to at the BMW factory in Germany, what they brought back from Germany and whether anyone paid for it. It's anyone's guess what the truth was.

When talking about cars 'destroyed' by fire, what does that actually mean?
They could easily be 'destroyed' from an insurance perspective but may well be worthy of restoration if they are valuable enough in a fully restored condition.
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