FARGO, N.D. (AP) — History buffs in northeastern North Dakota are encouraging people to donate money to buy a 1925 Case Model X Suburban Coupe that once belonged to a prominent businessman and philanthropist who never forgot his home state.
The rare car that belonged to the late G.B. Gunlogson, who grew up near Cavalier, is slated to be auctioned in Maryland in June. Officials with Icelandic State Park and the Pembina County Historical Museum, two groups that Gunlogson supported, say it's time to bring the car home.
Gunlogson, whose parents immigrated to North Dakota from Iceland, left the state at a young age and worked his way up to sales manager of the motor car division at Case, the Racine, Wisconsin, company known mostly for its farm equipment.
"He went from basically a farm kid in the middle of the prairie along the river, to the American dream," said Justin Robinson, manager of Icelandic State Park.
Robinson said if the auction proves to be successful, the car will be on display at the museum and used for special occasions at the park, much of which includes the Gunlogson Homestead near Akra. The park is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year.
Case manufactured its own hand-built luxury automobile from 1910 to 1927, with hopes that farmers familiar with its tractors and implements would also buy the car. But the $2,500 vehicle would not compete with Henry Ford's $290 Model T. It is believed that about 110 Case cars still exist.
Gunlogson gave his car to his sister Loa, who drove it for several years before trading it in to a Cavalier Pontiac-Case dealer. The car was owned by Irl Goode, of LaMoure, until 1988, when it was sold in an estate sale to Herb Wessel of Hampstead, Maryland.