THE PAST IS THE FUTURE: THE 28TH SOCIETY OF AUTOMOTIVE HISTORIANS LITERATURE FAIRE

Car Enthusiasts Model car collecting Southern California

The Society of Automotive Historians is holding their 28th Literature Faire and Exchange on Sunday, June 26th. Up for sale will be, according to the group's website, "automotive books, magazines, literature, manuals, sales brochures, paintings, drawings, photography, collectibles...prints, photos, original works of art, shop manuals, badges, ribbons, car model kits, banners, advertising materials, flags, press kits, hood mascots, car toys, license plates, signs, racing stuff and touring stuff." In other words, pretty much anything a gearhead might need to decorate his or her home. Event management is quick to point out, however, that no car parts will be on offer.

Keen-eyed readers may have noted the omission of the word "Annual" from the name of the event. This is intentional: the SAH Literature Faire is not an every-year event. In fact, it almost isn't an event at all. We attended the last occurrence of the Lit Faire back in 2014, and back then we were troubled by sparse attendance at that event, and not merely because of low sales. The story of the automobile is one of constant evolution, but now in 2016, it feels as though we have reached a sort of tipping point. Manual transmissions and analog steering and braking are practically extinct, and it won't be long before self-driving cars are commonplace (not that that's necessarily a bad thing...when you think about it, most of the people operating motor vehicles at any given moment are doing a really terrible job of it). As modern cars become increasingly detached from their technological forefathers, so too do car enthusiasts. There are young people walking among us whose passion for automobiles is marrow-deep, and yet these same people have never driven a carbureted vehicle, never hand-cranked a window into a lowered position, never dimmed their headlights with a foot-operated switch. It is essential that we maintain a link to the automobile's past, so that today's young enthusiasts can preserve and enjoy the entire spectrum of automotive history, and a proper collection of automotive literature is a darn fine place to start.

The SAH Literature Faire and Exchange will take place on the grounds of the NHRA Museum in Pomona, California. Event hours are 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. with free admission and free parking for buyers. Model Citizen will be there to help shore up the "collectibles" part of the equation (as we bristle at the notion that the precision-built scale replicas we offer are mere "toys"). We'll have the customary assortment of 1:18- and 1:43-scale cars on offer, as well as a few miscellaneous treats we've acquired over 40+ years of auto enthusiasm.

So, grab a kid and bring 'em to the Lit Faire. Take home a book or an old magazine, and show them what life was like for a Car Guy in the '70s. Or the '50s. Or the '20s. You might just be the inspiration for the next great car collector.

For more information, visit the Society of Automotive Historians' website.

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