Preserve the automobiles manufactured by the Durant Motor Company, provide enjoyment for each member with meets, tours & technical assistance.
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Very sad news here. Jack Nethercutt is a paid up member of our Durant Motors Automobile Club and loved the story of our William C. Durant. He has on display all our cars the Star, Durant, Flint, DeVaux, and even a Dort. He used to deliver his cosmetics in a Star coupe in 1931 in Santa Monica, Ca. He hosted our annual meeting two years ago up in Los Angeles. Great friend and big loss.Here is a news clip.
LOS ANGELES - J.B. Nethercutt, who made a fortune in beauty products for women as the co-founder of Merle Norman Cosmetics and used much of that wealth to assemble one of the world's finest automobile collections, has died. He was 91.
Nethercutt died Monday 12/06/04 at St. John's Hospital in Santa Monica, according to his son, Jack Nethercutt. The elder Nethercutt had been in failing health for some time. His wife of 71 years Dorothy passed away just this last October 9th 2004 of a heart attack.
Respected in the beauty industry as an expert on cosmetic chemistry, Nethercutt created a number of his firm's most popular products, including blush rouge, perfume and lipsticks.
But Nethercutt is perhaps better known to the general public for his private car collection, housed in two buildings in Sylmar, Ca. and open for viewing.
The Nethercutt Collection and Museum contains nearly 250 automobiles, as well as a nationally known automobile library and a state-of-the-art restoration shop. It has become a mecca for car enthusiasts and collectors since it opened in the 1970s.
Jay Leno, the host of "The Tonight Show With Jay Leno" and an avid car collector, knew Nethercutt and expressed great admiration for the breadth and quality of his collection.
"He was more than a car collector, he was a historian," Leno told the Los Angeles Times on Wednesday. "He has done a Smithsonian-style effort on the history of transportation in America right here in the San Fernando Valley. It's the equivalent of Cooperstown in baseball or the Rock and Roll (Hall of Fame and) Museum in Cleveland. It's the hall of fame for cars."
Lance Haynes I will sending out a nice card from our club tomorrow.
I hope his son will maintain the beautiful collection of cars and other memorabilia at the museum. If you ever have a chance you should vist this museum.
Betty and I met J. B. and his wife at the first Durant Club meeting in Detroit in the 80s, he had his 1927 Cars there that had just complete its restoration. It was the same model that he courted his wife in while attending college.
The Club was able to get a sample of the authenic 1927 Persian Blue body color and the W5 engine color.
I have samples of both if anyone wishes a sample.
As Lance says a great loss but he left great legacy.
About 4 years ago my wife and I toured the Nethercutt Collection. (Actually she stayed in the "Old movie room") I was told that Mr. Nethercutt set it up that the Nethercutt Collection ownes Merle Norman Cosmetics. I think that plan will keep the collection going for a long time.
On the top floor of the tower is the organ collection and and music boxes. The Northridge earthquake some years back damaged some of the organs and they have been re-restored. I understand that no cars were damaged.
I remember reading a statement that Mr Nethercutt made: "The life's work of J.B. Nethercutt"