Tuesday, May 25, 2010


Two weekends ago, Melanie and I took Eddie and Peter to the Tallahassee Automobile Museum. I’ve been wanting to write about it ever since, but Melanie finally beat me to the punch. Oh well. I’m still going to write about it. Here goes.

First off, it should be noted that neither I nor Melanie are car enthusiasts. Our trip to the museum was, more than anything, an attempt to do something that we haven’t already done a hundred times. Tallahassee isn’t exactly brimming with culture, and the auto museum is about as close to a tourist attraction as the town offers. (Which is not to say that the museum is among Tallahassee’s most notable locations—I’ve never heard anyone talk about it, quite honestly. Still, if I were forced at gunpoint to give Tallahassee tour stop recommendations, it’s one of very few things that might prevent me from getting shot.) Eddie and Peter like toy cars quite well, and they enjoy seeing real live fire trucks and buses, but I didn’t necessarily think they’d be all that excited by the museum, either. Still, we went. And I’m happy to report, it was moderately interesting.

While the main attraction is obviously the museum’s extensive collection of vehicles stemming from the early 1900s to the 2000s, there are a bunch of items on display that you’d never guess at based on the museum’s auto-centric name. There are antique cash registers, sports equipment and memorabilia, slot machines, knives, guns, dolls, pianos, and more. Some of these “extras” were among the most fascinating. I was particularly impressed by the pianos, many of which I thought my mom would admire. Take a look:

A replica of the first White House piano, if I remember correctly.

But of course, the cars are the main attraction. If you don’t find cars special in-and-of-themselves, you probably won’t find the bulk of cars at the museum particularly special. But there are a few “stars” among the bunch. These include:

What is believed to be President Lincoln’s hearse. Eddie is probably smiling a bit too much, considering.

The yellow duck driven by the Penguin in Batman Returns.

The Batmobile from Batman Forever.

One of two Batmobiles used in, if I remember correctly, Batman Returns.

The original Batman motorcycle from the old television series. Notice Robin’s sidecar.

The original pedal car used by the Little Rascals.

The museum also featured a model train display that wasn’t very exciting at all. It costs an extra $6 per person for admission to that part of the museum. Fortunately, we didn’t pay to see it. We just happened upon it. It’s just a large room, and you just walk into it. We walked in not even realizing we were going into that part of the museum. You can’t really tell until you’re in there. Nobody is there to stop you. As we looked around, we assumed it must be the display they were talking about, but we wondered why it was unguarded if you were supposed to pay extra money to see it. As we left the room, we saw a sign on the door (that was propped open, causing the sign to face those who are exiting the room) that asks museum patrons not to enter the room if they have not paid the extra money. Oops. But, if you’re ever at the museum yourself, I’d recommend paying only for the model train room, because you could pretty much see everything else on your way into it. The cashier at the front of the museum told us we could come back and visit the model train room separately sometime, so that would be your best value right there.

The end!

1 comment:

  1. Your label..crap ju jour...is more funny than usual in this case. Yes, I really enjoyed seeing those beautiful pianos. Liberace had nothing like those1

    It's nice to share your trip with you. And I'm sure Edison will remember some of this fondly.