Monday, October 8, 2012

Klairmont Kollection

CTCC Visits the Klairmont Kollection
by Tom Bruin

Saturday 9/29/2012

A spectacularly sunny and warm autumn day greeted several CTCC members as they

gathered for breakfast (you didn't think we would plan an event that didn't include food,

did you?) at the Golden Nugget restaurant in Chicago's Old Irving Park neighborhood on

Saturday, September 29th. CTCC members participating included: Gordon Gluff, Larry

and Karen Kelly, Len Keil, Doug Rogers, Dan Anderson, Tom Wolfe, Bill Werth, ]oel

Greenberg, Tom Bruin, Ron Pavlak, Jim Wilson, Dan Renna (and friend Bill Mingottij), and

Dave Pogorski. Many kudos go out from all of us to ]oel Greenberg who did a great job

organizing the event. Thanks Joel!

Once your trusty scribe finished guiding his compatriots and car-pool partners to the

restaurant (I was using the Jim Wilson GPS!] we indulged in hefty stacks of pancakes, fluffy

4-egg omlettes and plenty of coffee. The crew at the Golden Nugget did an outstanding job

accommodating our crowd, and were gracious enough to treat us all to a slice of

complimentary cheesecake to top off the meal. Fellow diners were able to enjoy a mini-car

show in the restaurant parking lot as ]oel, Bill Werth and the Kelly's all drove their vintage

T-birds on what was a glorious day for driving.

After breakfast we caravanned a few blocks to the Klairmont Kollections, a private

collection of more than 400 vintage cars that have been assembled by Chicago

entrepreneur Larry Klairmont. Mr. Klairmont is a WWII veteran that served in the US

Marines in the Pacific theater, and saw action on both Iwo ]ima and Saipan. Upon his

return to Chicago after the war, he opened a small laundry business, eventually buying the

building where his cleaning business was located. This was the humble beginning of a real

estate career that still thrives today. Mr Klairmont's collection is only open to private

viewing on a limited basis, but what a treat for us to see his wonderful and eclectic

assortment of rare and valuable cars. His collection includes many rare Rolls Royce cars,

Duesenbergs, Auburn's, Cord's, Cadillacs and Lincolns. Many of the cars were pre-war and

late 40's through early 1960's vintages. What is particularly amazing is that Mr. Klairmont

just starting collecting three short years ago! (he must have a lot of fun at car auctions the

past couple of years!!]

All in all, it was a fun and interesting day doing what most of us on the club enjoy

most...admiring classic automobiles!

photos- a "Woody", Larry Kelly and friend sit and chat in front of Larry's Garage and a rare Birdsnest. Photos by Doug Rogers

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