Horseless carriage club brings living history to Kingston area
The sight takes you back in time: dozens of antique cars from all over North America.
On Friday, members of the Horseless Carriage Club of America put their antiques on display for nearly three hours, steering large crowds to Market Square. Forty to 50 of the 70 to 80 vintage cars in the Kingston area this week were on hand.
“There are chapters all over the world. We happen to be the Southern Ontario chapter,” said Debbie Tzountzouris, one of the organizers of the club’s tour. “Every three years we invite other chapters to come and join us for a week of touring.”
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The Market Square stop was one of a couple on their second-last day in the area. Tzountzouris says all the cars on the tour are Brass Era cars as they were built before 1916.
Gil Fitzhugh from New Jersey says his 1914 Ford Model T is “very easy” to drive.
“It’s counter-intuitive, of course,” he said. “You shift gears with your feet, you give it gas with your hands. It takes a while to learn it, but I’ve taught kids to drive this car. It’s very, very easy.”
The Model T is the vehicle of choice in the group, as well over 60 are on tour.
Fitzhugh says old cars like his represented freedom at a time when people had to travel by horse.
Tzountzouris had her own view on what attracts people to antique vehicles.
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“The more technological we get, I think the more we try to bring people back to a simpler time,” she said. “We feel that we’re a travelling historic automobile group and we want to keep these cars on the road. Once they go to a museum, the chances are that they will not be driven again.”
And that, according to Tzountzouris, would be a very sad day.
The tour wraps up on Saturday.
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