A Duesie of a Story!

Publishing this website is a real treat because of the stories people tell you.  Here is one from a recent email.

I too have had a passion for these cars since my uncle bought one when I was seven years old. His was a 1936 Model J convertible roadster. engine #J-565 chassis #2590. Wheelbase 143 1/2", coachwork by Rollston of New York (N series). It had a black lacquer finish with double line scarlet pin stripping, black leather interior, fawn colored top and side mount covers.

(The) rear deck was divided into two compartments; a rumble seat for two and a forward section into which the top disappeared when not in use. My all time biggest thrill is when he came to our home one day with the Duesie and asked me if I wanted to take a ride with him. After I regained consciousness we went for our ride during which he asked if I would like to drive. I did drive the Duesie for some time and was the happiest 17 year old on God's green earth. He owned the car for 14 years and sold it in the late 50s~early 60s. On occasion and this is one of them, I wonder what became of his car. Always nice to know someone else shares a similar passion. 

Jack Barker

In a subsequent email, Jack said that his uncle offered the car for sale at $32,500! I'll bet it's ten times that now!. To be fair, though, a quart of milk has gone up in price by about the same factor! 

More info on the Duesenberg JN Series is here.

SJ533The Duesenberg that Jack described looked a lot like SJ533 shown to the right.  Jack's JN was not supercharged, but SJ533 is. That's me in the drivers seat.  No, I did not drive it, but I did go for a nice long ride in it! It's also similar to the Franklin Mint diecast model of J550 that I have in my collection.

Elbert's book (ref) confirms Jack's description, chassis, and engine number in the list by chassis and engine. The picture referenced as "maybe" J565 is a sedan, not a roadster. All in all, I'll go with Jack's description!


J.L. Elbert, "Duesenberg, the Mightiest American Motor Car", Post-Era Books, Arcadia CA, 1975.

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