Glenn Pray’s barn-found ’37 Cord going to auction

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Barn-found Cord has both Glenn Pray and Jim Leake in its ownership history | Leake Auction photos
Barn-found Cord has both Glenn Pray and Jim Leake in its ownership history | Leake Auction photos
Barn-found Cord has both Glenn Pray and Jim Leake in its ownership history | Leake Auction photos

To help fund his purchase of the remains of the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Company in 1960, Glenn Pray, an Oklahoma high school industrial arts teacher and auto enthusiast, sold his 1937 Cord Phaeton Model 812. The buyer was Jim Leake.

Pray had purchased the Cord in 1953, had restored it and used it as his family’s daily driver.

Handprints in the dust after 40 years of storage
Handprints in the dust after 40 years of storage

Leake, a car collector, television station owner and founder of the Leake Auction Company, kept the car for a couple of years and then sold it in a private transaction.

Several years later, Pray began a search to find the car, but even with the help of Cord historians and owners’ club members, could find no record of the car being registered or seen at any classic car shows. Pray reportedly believed the car had been exported.

But in 2014, Glenn Pray’s son, Doug, received a telephone call about a 1937 Cord Phaeton that had been purchased in an estate sale in the mid-1960s and had spent some 45 years parked away in a barn. Doug Pray was able to verify that the car had been his father’s car.

Although the years have taken their toll, the car was complete, Leake Auction reports, “down to its cigarette lighter and tires.”

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The car will be offered for sale at Leake’s June 5-7 sale in the River Spirit Expo on the Tulsa, Oklahoma, Fairgrounds.

“Because of this Cord’s history, I believe it has the potential of becoming one of the finest supercharged Cord Phaetons in the world,” Doug Pray is quoted in the Leake Auction news release.

Detail on the dash
Detail on the dash

“The Glenn Pray family will help with the history and any details the new owner may need,” Doug Pray added.

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A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

1 COMMENT

  1. I have pictures of the same car in yellow that my father owned before I was born when he worked for E.L.Cord in the experimental engineering dept.