9 March 2013
1927 Lincoln Model L Seven-Passenger Berline
- Chassis no. 41804
- Engine no. 41804
Sold for $46,200
- From the collection of Ken Pearson
- 35,900 original miles
- Three owners since new
- Known, comprehensively documented history
A Lincoln limousine befit a stately man of wealth and good bearing, which described Robert H. McElroy, a partner and vice-president in John D. Rockefeller’s immense profitable Standard Oil Company. McElroy’s Model L seven-passenger berline, a factory-bodied example of what he took delivery in 1927, came equipped with all the luxuries of a good life. The rear seat was appointed as nicely as a living room sofa, with all surrounding windows equipped with window shades drawn by silk rope pulls. Commands to the chauffeur were issued through an intercom system, state-of-the-art in the late-1920s.
McElroy used his Lincoln around his Chicago-area residence until his passing in 1938. It was stored on blocks for over 20 years, until passing to Robert Wernle, from whom Ken Pearson acquired it in November 1961. Mr. Pearson then carefully dismantled the 20,000-mile original car and spent over a year restoring it to factory-correct condition. In 1962, it proved its worth on the show field and open road, completing the Glidden Tour and earning its AACA Senior First Prize. It again completed the Glidden Tour in 1964, and after several more treks, it was quietly put away, to be well-maintained but seldom used in coming years, as other projects took away Mr. Pearson’s time. It came out of hiding briefly in 1990, to appear in Beverly Rae Kimes’s The Classic Car.
Typical of Mr. Pearson’s tender loving care, this incredible Lincoln’s now 50-year-old restoration looks only five years old, and the doors still close, as they say, like bank vaults. Recently fully serviced, it is accompanied by an archival collection that can only be described as unprecedented, including thorough documentation of the car’s history and restoration, correspondence with Standard Oil regarding Mr. McElroy, hand-written maps recording journeys taken in the Lincoln, records of the shows it attended, and the trophies with which it returned home. This is an utterly fascinating car, owned since new by fascinating people who loved it.
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