While the rest of the Corvette hobby chose to celebrate the Corvette's 50th Birthday in Nashville, Tennessee, the REAL party was happening in Flint, Michigan, where all 300 of the first model year (1953) Corvettes were built.
Solid Axle Corvette Club members had the unique opportunity to reunite some of the surviving employees from the first Corvette assembly plant and some prized examples of those first Corvettes-50 years after they rolled out the factory door. It was an emotional gathering, to say the least.
A first-ever opportunity to view many of the original factory blueprints for constructing the '53 model Corvettes, plus papers documenting running changes made during those first months of assembly, was taken advantage of by most of the SACC members. Never before had anyone outside of General Motors been allowed to view any of these historic documents. We were informed that much of this remarkable material had not seen the light of day for over 40 years!
Some portions of the original Flint assembly plant are still standing, although these last remainders of the historic building are slated for demolition soon. So, SACC staged a recreation of '53 Corvettes coming off the assembly line and exiting the building for their first exposure to the world. SACC members brought out 29 of the first-year Corvettes, and all 29 participated in the "drive-off" ceremony.
In addition to the Flint assembly plant festivities, the SACC 2003 National Convention featured three different "Shine-and-Show" exhibitions plus three road tours on some of the more scenic byways in the region.
The dates for the 2004 Solid Axle Corvette Club National Convention will be July 13-15 in Bowling Green, Kentucky. This will be the first week of actual production for the new '05 C6 Corvette. We invite all Corvette enthusiasts to join us in Bowling Green next July. Ownership of a solid-axle Corvette is not necessary, just enthusiasm for, dedication to, and appreciation of the first generation Corvettes.
Editor's Note (Max Brockhouse, a resident of Chapin, Illinois, is vice president of the Solid Axle Corvette Club. SACC describes itself as "the club for those who appreciate Corvettes from 1953-1962" and accepts all solid-axles, from fully and correctly restored to all types of modifieds and basketcases. For more information about SACC, write to P.O. Box 2288, North Highlands, CA 95660.)