As a boy growing up in Elmira, Ivan Polus dreamed of proudly owning an elusive Gaylord Auto. Finally he attained that intention and a long time later the vehicle he affectionately referred to as “The Pride Of Gaylord” returned to its hometown. This remarkable tale of discovery, commitment, and group spirit deserves to be retold and remembered. Ivan handed away last thirty day period (December 5, 2020) and so it is acceptable to rejoice his life and honor his legacy.
Ivan was born in 1936 on a potato farm located involving Elmira and Alba. He have to have inherited some of his mechanical talent and fascination from his father, Frank. In 1945, Frank developed and developed an early kind of snowmobile. He employed a Harley Davidson engine to power a huge propeller on the again of the sled. The snow machine could access speeds up to100 miles for each hour when zipping alongside on the ice included Otsego Lake.
Ivan graduated from Alba Large College in 1957 and received married a few of a long time later on. Heritage was designed on Could 2, 1963, when he and his wife drove to the Onaway location to purchase a steam motor. As fate would have it, Ivan stopped to question for instructions and throughout that dialogue discovered a nearby farmer had a Gaylord Car.
The thought of finally getting a Gaylord Auto was practically much too considerably for Ivan — specifically by such coincidental situation. The farmer claimed his father had purchased the car or truck new in 1911. On the other hand, in excess of the following 50 years, the car or truck experienced develop into a heap of junk. Here’s how Ivan described the condition in an article he wrote for the Horseless Carriage Gazette.
“The motor and body were in one particular location. The entire body was on major of some boards. Lamps and car pieces had been scattered all around the barn. The fenders were out of doors at the rear of the barn. The steering column was beneath the wooden lose. The windshield was in the hen property.”
Ivan compensated the man $50, scooped up all the car or truck parts, and headed household.
4 several years later, Ivan and his loved ones moved to Montana, having with them the remnants of the only regarded Gaylord Automobile. Several many years of painstaking, meticulous renovation resulted in the Gaylord Car or truck back again in jogging issue in the autumn of 1974. Ivan shared the aspects of this momentous party with the viewers of the Herald Moments in a entrance web page news unique. He explained to of the historic day when the Gaylord Automobile was driven for the initial time in 40 yrs. Ivan also shared his understanding of the Gaylord Motor Motor vehicle Company’s brief everyday living of 4 many years and his hope to deliver the car dwelling sometime in the in the vicinity of future.
Even while his supply to provide the vehicle to the Gaylord Chamber of Commerce did not materialize, a later on order did arise with a subsequent owner. A group fund raiser in 1981 produced the dollars necessary to invest in the absolutely restored gem in time for Gaylord’s centennial celebration. The Gaylord Vehicle returned house 70 years following rolling off the assembly line.
When the only remaining Gaylord Auto turned 100 years previous in 2011, Ivan was entrance and centre at a unique method held at the Otsego County Library. He captured the notice of the packed audience as he relived the excitement, troubles, and many twists and turns he experienced with the Gaylord Vehicle. Fortunately that presentation was recorded so potential generations will be able to listen to Ivan’s story staying informed as only he can.
The Gaylord Car is now on display at the Visitor Middle in downtown Gaylord. Each and every summer for the duration of Alpenfest, it transports the parade marshal at the front of the Grand Parade.
Ivan Polus built a lasting impression on our group by preserving an important aspect of our past. He often referred to his historic auto as “The Pride of Gaylord.” We will keep in mind him as a Delight of Otsego County.
Historical past Issues is a collaborative work of the Otsego County Historic Culture, Gaylord Neighborhood Faculties, Otsego County Library, Otsego County Commission on Getting old, RSVP, Kirtland College Centre Gaylord, Otsego Group Basis and Gaylord Place Council for the Arts.