This Cadillac Fleetwood belonged to Winthrop Rockefeller
This Mercedes could be the most valuable car in the collection
THis Ford Model A station wagon could be the first SUV
It's been here more than 40 years now. At the top of Petit Jean Mountain is a museum full of the names that made eyes turn and hearts race.
The Museum of Automobiles opened in 1964 and once displayed the private car collection of Winthrop Rockefeller.
Still on display here is his '67 Fleetwood Seventy-five. The Cadillac stayed at Petit Jean and was only driven by the former governor. The hood ornament is a solid silver bull, a gift from his wife, Jeanette.
After his death, Rockefeller's collection was sold and the building donated to the state park system. Many of the cars here now are on loan from private collectors around the country.
"I just enjoy these old cars, study them," says Jake Murph. Murph is one of the volunteers that helps keep things rolling at the museum. Believe it or not, each one of these cars are in top mechanical condition.
They start the engines every six months - and drive them at least once a year. Jake's favorites have unusual attachments.
Murph explains, "Like this one here with the carbide generator on it. It's a little similar to the old coal miners' carbide lights. They put the carbide in the basket and water in the tank above it. Turn the water on and it drips down and forms a gas. And it's got a little pump in it like the old gasoline lanterns. Then they go out to the headlights and open the door to the headlights and turn the gas on and light them. And that was there lights."
The 1912 Ford Model T touring car's running lights and tail lights were kerosene lamps. Only a few years later this 1915 Model T Couplet featured electric lights.
A 1936 Mercedes 500 is on display, perhaps the most valuable car in the collection. It features a left hand drive, the same as the Mercedes models driven by Adolph Hitler.
But for foreign visitors the most popular sight isn't the Corvette, or even the rare Indian motorcycle. No, it's the cardboard cut-out of Bill Clinton that they all pose for pictures next to.
It's hard to explain man's fascination with the automobile. In just over 100 years they have facilitated huge changes in our society. A look at a 1929 Ford Wagon makes one thing of a modern SUV.
They just don't make them out of wood anymore do they.
The Museum of Automobiles on Petit Jean Mountain might trigger a fond memory or two.
It's a collection of marvelous machines that just may leave you Amazed by Arkansas.