CRUISIN': The Kaiser museum at Jamestown's The Cookery
In July 5 issue, Russell County News By Ron Cowell, Columnist
Last week while I was crusin’ around the County I happened to drive past “The Cookery” in Jamestown. The old Kaiser setting in front of the place caught my eye and I said to myself, “ There has to be a story in that old car.”
With that I went inside and talked to Floyd and Judy the owners of The Cookery about the old car out front and all the old cars inside in the museum. The museum is right in with the Cookery.
Floyd Back told me he has always been a car buff but got away from it for a while. In the mid 80’s, he moved here from Akron, Ohio and bought the Cookery. He started looking for an old car to put in front of the restaurant and got to talking with Billy Blair who saw an old Kaiser setting here in the county. Floyd and Judy took a ride to check it out.
It was just what they were looking for so he bought his first Kaiser and had it setting in front of the place. Actually the first vehicle to set in front of the place was a Studabaker Station wagon but after it got to be in rough shape it was replaced with the Kaiser.
That got Floyd started on Kaiser – Frazier’s. Since then he has acquired several other cars from the Kaiser – Fraizer line. He now owns and has on display in the museum six Kaisers, one Fraizer, one Henry J and a Jeepster.
I ask Floyd if it was hard to get parts for these cars. He told me be back in the 70’s it was rough to find parts. He and Judy would travel all over and tromp through junkyards and so on to try to find parts for the cars.
He told me Judy would beat on the cars in the junkyard to scare the snakes away and he would search them for parts.
Since the internet and Ebay parts are a lot easier to find and he can look for them right in the comfort of his home. Parts for the old cars however are not all that cheap. Recently a bumper jack for one of these cars went on Ebay for $350.00
The latest car Floyd is working on is one he is very proud of. He found a 1954 Kaiser Darrin. It is in the process of being restored at this time. There were only 435 of these made and he has number 116. There were only 50 of them painted red and his is one of the 50. When he gets finished with this car we will go back and see it and have some pictures to show you.
Floyd was telling me that any more cars he buys will be restored already. The 1954 Darrin will be the last one he does.
There is one car though he would like to find. He would like to find a 1955 Willis two door hardtop, so if you are out cruisin the country and run across one let Floyd know.
If you stop in The Cookery to eat be sure to ask Floyd or Judy to see the Museum. If you haven’t seen it before it is well worth the trip. Even if you have seen it, it is worth seeing again. Along with the old cars there are several old Outboard motors and many other things worth seeing.
As you pass you may see the lady that has been setting inside the car for years. I’m told her name is Margaretta. I would say the food is good there because every time I pass she is there.
Most of the collection of Kaiser – Fraizer Cars are on display along with a few others. There is an old Rambler in there that is like the ones from the early 1900’s that is a reproduction but it in itself is a classic. It was reproduced in 1965.
Stop by The Cookery and see Floyd and Judy and grab a bite to eat and see the Museum. It’s like a small piece of the old Rt. 66 right here in Russell Counry.
If your Car Club is having an event you would like us to tell everyone about drop me a line with all the information at email@example.com. All information on events needs to be turned in at least two weeks before the event.
Also with summer here you may want to have one of the Clubs in the County bring their cars for display at your club or church or function. Once again drop me a line and I will get you in touch with the Clubs in the area. The clubs of Russell County are more than happy to show off their cars.
The Times Journal is a weekly newspaper issued on Thursdays. It was first published on October 13, 1949, by Andrew J. and Terry Norfleet.
P.O. Box 190
120 Wilson St.
Russell Springs KY 42642
Russell County News is a weekly newspaper issued on Saturdays, and is mailed free to every address in Russell County, Ky. It was first published on February 1, 1913.
404 Monument Square
Jamestown KY 42629