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Auburn, Indiana. May 5th, 2020. Worldwide Auctioneers, responsible for the sale of some of the world’s finest collector vehicles, is gearing up for a historic sale of the most extensive collection of World War II artifacts, uniforms, militaria, and memorabilia at its inaugural Americana Festival Auction this summer. Over 1,500 lots will be offered without reserve, all available via live and online bidding from June 12- 13th in Auburn, Indiana. Proceeds will benefit the J. Kruse Education Center, a dedicated 501(c) 3 organization providing career pathway development to both veterans and students.
Among the many significant military offerings slated to go under the hammer is a Dodge WC57 Command Car, assigned to the 3rd army motor pool during WWII and purpose-built for General Patton and his command, as well as three outstanding vintage airplanes from the Hoosier Air Museum. They will sell together with an extraordinary selection of militaria from the collection of the former National Military History Center. “This is one of the largest collections of authentic WWII artifacts ever offered in one place, an absolute one-of-a-kind opportunity for the enthusiast or serious collector,” said John Kruse, Principal and Auctioneer. “Where else will you find General Patton’s command car selling alongside three vintage airplanes, all at no reserve? Taking inventory of this very special selection of militaria during our current crisis has also served as a fitting reminder to me that we have triumphed over enormous adversity before, and we will again.”
Forerunner of the famed post-war Dodge Power Wagon, the celebrated Dodge WC57 command car was a purpose-built military vehicle, produced from 1942 to 1945, with off-road capability and 4×4 drivetrain. This particular command car was a part of the 3rd Army headquarters’ motor pool, specially modified for General George Patton with armor plating and high-volume horns and siren. Armed with a Browning .30 caliber machine gun, it includes ‘three-star general’ and ‘3rd Army HQ’ pennants and is powered by Dodge’s durable 230 cid, inline six-cylinder engine. “This iconic vehicle is obviously not only very historically significant, it’s also eminently usable, even today, and would be a wonderful asset for parades, reenactments and period display,” said John Kruse. Learn more about General Patton’s Dodge WC57 command car here.
The three vintage aircraft and warbirds offered for sale at no reserve include a 1946 Piper J-3 Cub, used during World War II as the L-4 Grasshopper for reconnaissance, presented in an iconic paint scheme known as “Lock Haven Yellow”. Designed and first produced during the Golden Age of Aviation, from 1918 to 1939, the Piper Cub was used as a trainer for thousands of civilian pilots since its introduction in 1937. Nicknamed the ‘Bamboo Bomber’ for its wooden wings and tail section, the 1944 Cessna UC-78 selling alongside it was used to train bomber pilots during World War II, and for military light transport, liaison and communications. Also on offer is a singular 1935 Speedbird, a one-off experimental aircraft with a two-seat, side-by-side arrangement.
The Americana Festival Auction is scheduled to run as a live and online event from June 12– 13 at Worldwide’s Auburn, Indiana headquarters. The safety and well-being of clients, team and wider community is paramount and the venue will incorporate all safe social distancing and sanitation protocols. All inventory can be viewed online at worldwideauctioneers.com, with live and online bidding available across three platforms. Interested parties should call 260.925.6789 for further details or email email@example.com. As always auction previews are available for private viewing, again with safe social distancing protocols.
Learn more about the mission and work of the J. Kruse Education Center here.