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1954 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster - The Famous 'Entombed Corvette'


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From the Mecum Auction Listing:

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Lot S187 1954 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster The Famous 'Entombed Corvette'

Kissimmee, FL Auction
January 18-27, 2013
This Lot scheduled to be sold SAT 4:50PM
VIN:  E54S001147

Description

This 1954 Chevrolet Corvette roadster is the famous "Entombed" Corvette removed from a brick vault inside a Brunswick, Maine grocery store once owned by local businessman Richard Sampson. A successful and somewhat eccentric man who built a chain of 33 grocery stores, ran for governor and served as a Senator from Maine, Sampson bought the car new in 1954 and drove it until 1959, when he took it to the construction site of a new store in Brunswick and had workmen enclose it in a brick-and-mortar vault. He originally left orders in his will that the car remain sealed in brick until the year 2000, but later voided the will before he passed away in 1969.

The car first came to the public's notice when automotive writer Ken Gross wrote about it in Special Interest Autos Magazine, thinking he would have to wait 25 years to tell the rest of the story. But in 1982 the building was purchased by Brunswick auto dealer Frank Goodwin with the provison that the car be removed by the expiry of the existing lease in 1986. When the time arrived, the Corvette was liberated once again by Sampson's daughter Cynthia, who watched as workers removed the outside wall brick by brick. Although the moisture in its enclosure had caused the car's Polo White paint to yellow and blister over time, the tires still held air and the chrome, top and interior were still in remarkably good condition. Cynthia Sampson then moved the car, by then a celebrity in the Corvette community, to her home in Daytona Beach, Florida, where it remained in her living room for the next ten years until its purchase by a Corvette collector who pledged to preserve it rather than restore it.

In 1996 the car made its first appearance in the Bloomington Gold Special Collection in Springfield, Illinois, where it was displayed in honor of Richard Sampson, Sr. with Cynthia Sampson in attendance. Today this amazing piece of Corvette history remains probably the lowest mileage unrestored Corvette in the world, still with the 2,331 miles that were on the odometer when it finally again saw daylight 27 years after its entombment.

Highlights:

- The famous "Entombed" Corvette
- Purchased new by Richard Sampson and driven until 1959
- He owned a chain of grocery stores and decided to enclose the car in a brick and motor vault inside one of the stores
- In 1982 the building was purchased and the new owner said the car had to leave by 1986
- Sampson's daughter Cynthia then kept the car in her living room for the next ten years when purchasd by a collector
- Made famous by Ken Gross in Special Interest Autos Magazine
- Bloomington Gold Special Collection in 1996
- Under 2,500 miles on the car today
- An amazing piece of Corvette history


Barrett-Jackson - Scottsdale, Arizona 2016 Auction Listing - Lot #1279:

Lot #1279 - This 1954 Chevrolet Corvette roadster is the famous "Entombed" Corvette removed from a brick vault inside a Brunswick, ME, grocery store once owned by local businessman Richard Sampson.

He was a successful and somewhat eccentric man who built a chain of 33 grocery stores, ran for governor and served as a Senator from Maine. Sampson bought the car new in 1954 and drove it until 1959, when he took it to the construction site of a new store in Brunswick and had workmen enclose it in a brick-and-mortar vault. He originally left orders in his will that the car remain sealed in brick until the year 2000, but later voided the will before he passed away in 1969.

The car first came to the public's notice when automotive writer Ken Gross wrote about it in Special Interest Autos Magazine, thinking he would have to wait 25 years to tell the rest of the story. But in 1982 the building was purchased by Brunswick auto dealer Frank Goodwin with the provison that the car be removed by the expiry of the existing lease in 1986. When the time arrived, the Corvette was liberated once again by Sampson's daughter Cynthia, who watched as workers removed the outside wall brick by brick.

Although the moisture in the enclosure had caused the car's Polo White paint to yellow and blister over time, the tires still held air and the chrome, top and interior were still in remarkably good condition. Cynthia Sampson then moved the car, by then a celebrity in the Corvette community, to her home in Daytona Beach, FL, where it remained in her living room for the next 10 years until it was purchased by a Corvette collector, who pledged to preserve it rather than restore it.

In 1996 the car made its first appearance in the Bloomington Gold Special Collection in Springfield, IL, where it was displayed in honor of Richard Sampson, Sr., with Cynthia Sampson in attendance. Today this amazing piece of Corvette history still has the 2,335 miles that were on the odometer when it finally saw daylight again, 28 years after its entombment.