Sarasota Classic Car Museum intertwines city's history with antique cars

If you're looking for speed and a piece of history, you can find it at the Sarasota Classic Car Museum.

"Anything from turn of the century, brass air cars, to celebrity automobiles, modern exotics, American cars, European cars, concept vehicles. We have it," said Clary.

The museum first opened in 1953. Back then cars weren't a part of history -- yet.

"It's the second oldest classic car museum in the country, the first oldest being the Henry Ford Museum in Detroit," explained Clary. "Cars really were not that old yet. So there weren't many automobile museums yet. It's our little claim to fame in Sarasota."

There are about 90 cars on display. They have something that is going to capture the attention of just about anyone. 

"Anything from the past that is unique and a lot of it local history as well," said Clary. 

That includes John Ringling's 1922 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost. 

"It was seen all over the country. It's a great thing to have especially as Sarasota history goes. The circus built this town," said Clary. 

Inside the museum, you can literally smell the history, taking you a step back in time.

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"It smells like oil, leather and wood. I hear that about 50 times a day," Clary said. "It takes them back and it does. It really has that vintage smell and for car guys it really brings them back."

It brings you back to a time when engines rumbled and before these cars were considered "classics." 

"Antique cars had style and you could tell them apart. It's something that will never be done again," Clary said. "It's important for us to preserve the history of these automobiles and the stories behind them."

The Sarasota Classic Car Museum is located at 5500 North Tamiami Trail in Sarasota. The museum is open every day from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

LINK: For more information, head over to the Sarasota Classic Car Museum website.