Indians for Christmas

Those of you who follow my blog know that I have another life, with motor vehicles. Every now and then, I am asked to appraise collectible cars, boats and motorcycles. A few weeks ago, I was asked to appraise the Indian Motorcycle collection that was recently donated to the Springfield Museums, on Edwards Street in our city.

The Indian collection was amassed over a 40-year period by Charles and Estha Manthos. They kept the Indians in a building that was part of the former factory complex on Hendee Street, less than 1,000 feet from my company, Robison Service.

The collection is the largest of its kind in the world. Here are some of the bikes you'll see if you visit us when it's open, in January 2009 . . .

There are a number of famous motorbikes, inclubing this oval tack racer from Freddie Marsh

Here's one of the famous Indian V-twin engines

Few people have ever seen the Indian cars. Here's one of the only extant prototypes

The Scount was one of Indian's most successful models

You can still see Indian style in today's retro designs.

Prior to the late fifties, gears were shifted by a lever on the right side of the tank

Here's a closeup of one of the carburetors

Stay tuned for more images, and check the museum calendar at


Good morning! Even I, an mechanical moron, can see the sheer beauty of the Indian's design. Gorgeous.

Merry Christmas, John.

PaulGrobstein said…
John -

Recently read, was impressed by your book. Important insights for all of us, not only people on the spectrum. And so a post of excerpts/comments on our Serendip website. With an on-line forum if you'd like to weigh in there.

Thanks for your contributions to helping all of us get it less wrong.
Niksmom said…
Ooh, I wish we lived close enough to come see that exhibit! My husband would go ga-ga!

Merry Christmas!
Osh said…
That exhibit looks fascinating, I know my boys (big and little) would both enjoy it.

Have yourself a Merry Christmas.
I know this has nothing to do with your post, but I just read your book (it was an xmas gift) it was the best gift I have ever received! I laughed and cried and cried . My son was diagnosed this fall at 8 and this book answered so many questions I had from his perspective. As he sat her xmas morning with his electric set making different sounds with water currents I thought of you as a child. Zach has been an amazing gift for me to look at life differently than most, but your book was a big gift in helping me understand his thought process more. Thank YOu John! You are amazing!
Liz said…
Dear John,
thank you so much for the opportunity to take a look into your world. I am a mental health social worker who is about to begin working with a number of young students either diagnosed with or showing significant traits of aspergers syndrome. One of my students (17 year old) had been troubling me as he is undiagnosed with parents in denial but he has requested help in developing social skills and finding answers as to why he is so different. I plan to share your book with him as well as your blog.
again thank you
did you fire any of them up?

if not, you wanted to, right?
Tena Russ said…
Hi John,

Just stopped by to wish you a wonderful New Year.

I am NOT showing your photos to my gearhead husband.

Chi Hoang said…
Just finished your book - thanks!

I'd like to recommend the movie: The World's Fastest Indian.
Anonymous said…


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