“Anything On Wheels”
The Forney Museum Of Transportation does not exaggerate. When they say, “Anything on Wheels,” they mean anything on wheels: bicycles, carriages, motorcycles, bubble cars, agricultural machines, trains, and, of course, automobiles. This museum is meant for you to spend hours looking and learning.
Who Would Have Thought?
Each exhibit is displayed with a detailed explanation of the artifact and its history. You are guaranteed to learn something that you did not know. For example, did you know that the Ford Model A was not only manufactured in Detroit, but also in Windsor, Canada; Buenos Aires, Argentina; Cologne, Germany; Copenhagen, Denmark; Cork, Ireland; Trafford Park, England and Geelong, Australia? Neither did I, and that is exactly why I enjoy museums, and why I especially enjoy this one.
What began, in the 1950’s, as a small collection of vintage automobiles is now a diverse collection of ground transportation vehicles. The 70,000-square-foot museum has more than 500 individual exhibits. The largest, of course, is the #4005, 600 ton, “Big Boy” locomotive, the largest steam engine ever built. Of the 25 of these huge machines built, only 8 remain in existence, and few of those are housed protected from the elements. The Forney museum is preserving this rare piece of American transportation history.
The Timmes motorcycle collection includes Indians (nearly twenty of them), Harley Davidsons, Hondas, and some more obscure brands that most people have never heard of such as a 1932 Fornax 1000, a 1959 Cushman Eagle, and a 1948 Softicycle to name a few. Of the several hundred cars in the museum, the two most famous are the 1927 Rolls Royce Phantom I once owned by a Nepalese prince and the 1923 Kissel Speedster once owned by Ameila Earhart. But, you will also see many other cars that are significant pieces of automotive history such as a 1940 Packard One-Twenty Coupe, one of the cars that was Packard’s first foray in to the mid-priced eight cylinder car market that many automobile historians believe started the end of Packard’s status as the United States’ premier luxury car manufacturer.
The museum has frequent temporary exhibits. Earlier this year, the museum had special exhibits of Mercedes Benz and classic Corvettes. Currently there is a special exhibit of Chrysler Imperials, and appearing in the coming months are Pontiac GTOs, woody station wagons, Oldsmobile Toronados, and Ford F150s.
For those of you who live in the area, The Forney Museum of Transportation allows for the use of its facilities. Use them for birthdays, receptions, conferences, meetings, or any social or business gathering. Party with the cars! The Exhibit Hall has a standing room capacity of up to 500 people and a seated capacity of 350 people. The meeting room holds up to 100 people, 60 if they are seated. The Trolley holds up to 25 people. Perfect for your small gathering. Contact the museum for the logistical details and pricing.
All in all, this is an exceptional museum. It is fun, engaging, and educational. If you live in the Denver area, or are visiting, take the time to drop by, you’ll be glad you did.