Ohio Auto Museums

By Skip Peterson

There aren’t car shows to attend, or cruise-ins held during the dead of winter, but it is a good time to brush up on your car history and museums. There’s a couple locally, and if you want to take a drive, there is a plenty to see in northern Ohio.

In downtown Dayton we have America's Packard Museum, showcasing about 50 Packards at any one time. America's Packard Museum, located at 420 S. Ludlow St., is actually the original Citizens Motorcar Co., which was an active Packard dealership in Dayton. The dealership opened in 1908, moved to the current building in 1917, and sold Packards until 1940. The museum is open every day except Christmas Day and New Year's Day, Monday through Friday, from noon to 5 p.m.; and Saturday and Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m. www.americaspackardmuseum.org, 937-226-1710

Carillon Historical Park

Carillon Historical Park has the Dayton Sales building, which is a replica of a car dealership from the 1920s. It holds a number of cars built in Dayton, including a Stoddard-Dayton, Courier, Lambert and Speedwell. There are other local machines on display and a replica workshop. Carillon Historical Park, which also has many other exhibits, is open from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday; and from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $8 for adults and $5 for children 3 to 17. www.daytonhistory.org, 937-293-2841

National Packard Museum

Warren, Ohio, is home to the National Packard Museum. Packards were originally built in Warren around the turn of the century at the Packard Electric Co. plant. The museum has 32 Packards in its permanent collection, including a 1900 Model B, known to be the first Packard production car, through a 1956 Packard Caribbean convertible. Warren is just under a four-hour drive from Dayton. Located at 1899 Mahoning Ave N.W., the museum is open Tuesday through Saturday, noon to 5 p.m.; Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m. Admission is $8 for adults, $5 for seniors. www.packardmuseum.org, 330-394-1899

Crawford Auto Aviation Collection

The Crawford Auto Aviation Collection, part of the Western Reserve Historical Society in Cleveland, displays automobiles in various stages of development both nationally and regionally. The museum also has many other auto-related artifacts including brochures, owner’s manuals and advertisements. In addition to autos, the collection includes 14 motorcycles, 10 airplanes and a variety of carriages and bicycles. The variety of cars ranges from 1897 through current unique prototypes. While the museum has had financial issues, it has sold some cars and revamped the collection; it still has well over 100 autos, but is now displaying the cars in a more open and viewer-friendly environment. Located at 10825 East Blvd., the museum is open is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. Admission is $10 for adults, $9 for seniors and $5 for children. www.wrhs.org, 216-721-5722

Canton Classic Car Museum

The Canton Classic Car Museum features 40 rare and unusual classic and special-interest automobiles. The oldest car is a 1901 curved-dash Oldsmobile, and the newest is a 1970 Plymouth Superbird. Also in the collection is a Holmes, a full-sized air-cooled car built in Canton from 1917 through 1922. Six other cars were built in Canton in the early years, but the Holmes was considered the ugliest. The museum also displays vintage toys and advertising, and has a room that is filled with unique and historic memorabilia from Canton. The museum is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $7.50 for adults, $6 for seniors and $5 for youth. www.cantonclassiccar.org, 330-455-3603

While the information contained here is accurate as of our deadline, be sure to contact any museum before your travels.

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