National Historic Vehicle Register gains support in Congress

National Historic Vehicle Register gains support in Congress

Bipartisan legislation would create a permanent register in the Department of Interior to catalog historically significant vehicles

The National Historic Vehicle Register has cataloged 18 vehicles considered to be significant to American motoring heritage, entering them into the Library of Congress under a resolution by the U.S. Senate.

The Historic Vehicle Association, along with the Department of Interior, since 2014 has led the effort to recognize the landmark cars and trucks, which range from the earliest days of the automobiles to unique customs and champion race cars.

The HVA could get a boost with new legislation that would establish a permanent standalone register within the Department of Interior to document historically significant cars, trucks and motorcycles.

The 1907 Thomas Flyer won the New York-to-Paris endurance run

The National Historic Vehicle Register Act, H.R. 4066, was introduced by U.S. Reps Tim Walberg, a Michigan Republican, and Alan Lowenthal, a California Democrat, whose support underlines the bipartisan nature of the effort.

“The automobile is one of the premiere symbols of American ingenuity and inventiveness,” Walberg said in a news release. “In Michigan, from the earliest models to today, making cars is woven into our state’s DNA.

“With the help of this bipartisan effort, the story of how the automotive industry has shaped and transformed our history will be shared and preserved for generations to come.”

The McGee Roadster, Gypsy Rose lowrider and Hirohata Merc Custom on display in Washington

Highlights of the historic vehicles archived by the HVA include the first entry, the 1964 Shelby Cobra Daytona Coupe, followed by such diverse cars as the 1964 Meyers Manx dune buggy, President William Howard Taft’s 1909 White Steam Car, President Ronald Reagan’s 1962 Willys Jeep CJ-6, the 1932 Ford V8 McGee Roadster hot rod, the 1964 Chevrolet Impala lowrider named Gypsy Rose, the 1907 Thomas Flyer and the 1947 Tucker 48 Prototype known as The Tin Goose.

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“The Historic Vehicle Association’s mission is to share our automotive heritage with the American people,” said Mark Gessler, president of the Historic Vehicle Association. “The bipartisan collaboration between Representatives Walberg and Lowenthal supporting the introduction of the National Historic Vehicle Register Act reinforces our mission and clearly recognizes the role the automobile has played in shaping our culture.”

For information about the Historic Vehicle Register, visit the HVA website.

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