McLellan's Automotive

Filed under:  Collectibles
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I am a bit of a collector, especially when it comes to car related items. I have a room full of car memorabilia, including a fairly large stack of car brochures from all over the world. When I learned of Robert's collection I can honestly say that my first thoughts were "this is insane". It is a never-ending, complete and extremely educational collection, and the learning goes way beyond the automotive industry because each and every piece in this constantly evolving collection is a small time of every sensibility of the time.

mclellans automotive logo

McLellan's Automotive logo.

McLellan's 150,000-strong inventory makes for a veritable treasure hunt… growing, as hundreds of new hand-picked items are added twice a month.

In 1996, McLellan's Automotive History acquired the Rick Lenz collection. Rick's wish and legacy was for his literature to go into the hands of collectors all over the world who share his passion and will continue to preserve the history of transportation. Rick lost a battle to cancer and passed away on February 17, 2002 and his ashes were scattered at sea per his wishes. He will be remembered for his endless devotion to the hobby.

Thousands of collectors have found their pot of gold at McLellan's.
There are a number of steps that go into selecting literature that is offered for sale. First and foremost, they require it to be in pristine condition. That means McLellan's carefully examines each and every item to make sure that it is complete and relatively unblemished (for its age, rarity, etc.). If it is very old and rare, but has a minor imperfection, they make a statement to that effect in the description.

After an item passes inspection, it is cataloged and filed numerically in a clear archival quality protective envelope. It is preserved at a constant temperature, housed in their two-story, 2,000 sq. ft. truss system, climate-controlled storage facility -- a bug-free, dust-free and moisture-free environment. With their advanced computer system and innovative filing, McLellan's can tell you in seconds if an item is in stock, and discuss it with you in a matter of minutes.

All of their orders are shipped in boxes — even an order consisting of a single sheet of paper (which usually means it's rare) is packed in one of these boxes to protect against damage during shipment.

In addition, your literature is first put into a plastic bag to protect it from water damage if the box is left outside on a rainy day and your credit card receipt is taped to your invoice — so that the staple doesn't scratch your literature.

McLellan's purchases additional inventory on an on-going basis and at the present time have over 150,000 items in the online inventory, and many many more times in the warehouse. The 2,000+ pages of cataloged offerings that you can browse at their site represent only a small percentage of their inventory.

Robert McLellan.
Robert McLellan's collection began at age three with a 1947 Pontiac folder which his father presented to him while purchasing a new car — to entertain him.

This simple act opened the doors to a lifelong treasure hunt for rare and unusual automotive information. His collection grew to encompass all years of all makes worldwide and now includes books, programs, sales literature, memorabilia and cars. In the 60s collecting literature led to the development of a part-time business.

After taking an early retirement from the petroleum industry in 1984, both the cars and literature business became a full time operation for Robert. Today McLellan's Automotive History specializes in original sales literature for sports cars, racing, antiques and classics, helping other collectors look for their 'pot of gold' — whatever it may be.

robert mclellans

Robert McLellan.

Sharon McLellan.
When you call the company you will probably find yourself talking to Sharon. Her love for classic and antique cars led to writing as an automotive journalist about the cars and the people who drive them.

The combination of automotive knowledge, business experience and excellent computer skills mean that she can answer your questions quickly and knowledgeably. When you want to know about the availability of any particular literature, information on when your order was shipped, or instructions on how to use our web site, ask for Sharon.

(source: McLellan's Automotive)

McLellan's Automotive   Official site.
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THE "1900's" BOOK.
Each decade seems to have its own stylistic language, and this issue showcases logos, ads, cars, companies and products (and their typographical sensibilities) from the early 1900s.

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