Newsletter and Event announcement

Volume I, Number 1 - February, 2000


Message from the President

Los Angeles Maritime Museum, San Pedro, CA

As your new president. I would like to thank all of you who attended this event and a special thanks to those of you who drove Imperials. Also l believe a thank you is in order to the McPheeter’s for their long haul down from Visalia, CA. Thanks also to the Los Angeles Maritime Museum director, Dr. William Lee, and the archivist, Michael Cropper, for their hospitality.

I believe this was the best turnout of members (40) and IMPERIALS (14+, and one very nice 55 New Yorker convertible) that I have ever seen at any happening in years. All I can say is fantastic! This is your club and YOU made it happen!

Your President,

David Doty

December 1999 Event and Meeting Report

Our Club had a great event and meeting on December 5, 1999 at the Los Angeles Maritime Museum, San Pedro. There were many Imperials in the parking lot. Starting before 10 a.m., these majestic "land yachts" pulled into the Maritime Museum parking lot, the later cars to a bigger crowd, of course.

Nannette Clark-Cook and Charlie Cook did a great job of welcoming all and keeping a list of attendees. These included Irving Axelrod, Bob Baker, Dick & Nancy Benjamin, Kenneth Cassady, Dave Cleveland, David & Billie Doty, Art Flanders, Doug Gilfillan, Franklin Golisch, Stewart Gordon, Lindsay Hudson, Alison, Martha, Caitlin & Vernon Ikeler, Reinhold & Lydia Klein, Ken Knox, Denis & Martha Lardner, John Lloyd, Larry Maroney, Bill & Jan McPheeters, Zvonko & Tony Mihovilovich, Norman Phair, Mark Pickard, Barry Poynter, J. Christopher Reynolds, Stuart Riggs, Don Savard, Bob Schmitt & Dawn Saunders, Alan Schweir, Norm Silverman, Ben Taniguchi, Dennis Thurmond, Jay Weinert, Greg Wright & son Benjamin - and perhaps others - whom may have missed the sign-in with Nannette.

About 10:45 a.m., after a little socializing in the parking lot around the Imperials, some owners were heading to the museum to tour there, some were still in the parking lot, but a few had drifted over towards the firehouse, on the other side of the lot, and were clustering around a white car. A closer look revealed the Imperial Parade Phaeton owned by City of Los Angeles! What the heck was it doing in San Pedro?

The amazing story, as told by two of the firemen, was that it had been brought to the firehouse to be used by a city dignitary to ride in the San Pedro Christmas Parade later in the day. They had noticed all the Imperials in the lot, so pushed it out a little early for their "entry" in our "show".

A few club members were posing with the Phaeton. Vernon Ikeler took some great pictures. John Lloyd appeared to be in a state of joyful shock, never expecting to be so close to this "crown jewel" of Imperials. A half-hour later, this Imp was on the way to the parade (what else could be more appropriate?), but many of us were left with great memories of this unexpected Imperial treat.

John Lloyd in the Parade Phaeton (Photo courtesy of Denis Lardner)

So the next time the Club issues an invitation to an event, think twice about missing it - you may miss more good karma! For the record, the LA Parade Phaeton is now white with a white interior.

Our meeting was in the museum's Brass Room, a very colorful location decorated with many brass ship's "titles" from vessels which were scrapped at the harbor. 30+ of our Imperial owners and friends were at the meeting.

Dave Cleveland, 1998-99 president, called the meeting to order and the club officers were introduced. Nannette Clark-Cook gave a Treasurer’s report. The primary business was the election of officers. Dave Doty (Phone: 562-864-5410) was elected as President. Jay Weinert (760-321-6805;, Nannette (858-277-9870; and Bob Schmitt (818-563-1419, were re-elected as Vice-President, Treasurer and Secretary, respectively. The Club also discussed amending the club bylaws to institute dues, primarily to help fund our hosting of the Statewide meet next year.

Our crowd declined slightly to 25 when we assembled for lunch at the Acapulco, but this filled our reserved table perfectly.

This was a great location - San Pedro, the Maritime Museum and Ports O’ Call may require a return visit!

Club Bylaws - Proposed Changes

SCIO’s new officers met on January 22 to discuss revisions to the Club’s Bylaws and plan events. We’re targeting four events and four newsletters this year. Nannette reported that she is holding funds paid by members for an Imperial Eagle subscription for 1999 because no issues were published. We decided to offer these members a refund or a full Club membership for this year (saving $5). Call Nannette with your decision. All now on the roster (175) will receive this and the next newsletter; when the new Bylaws are passed, your dues must be paid to receive a newsletter after these two.  In addition to the Club officers, Bill McPheeters was invited to this meeting to provide expertise with Bylaw research.  Our thanks to Bill for his research and advice.

The proposed, newly-revised Bylaws are attached to this newsletter. Call me (818-563-1419) if you want a copy of the current Bylaws for comparison. The primary changes are to create a Board of Directors and institute dues, rather than depending on donations and Eagle subscriptions for income. This is important for our hosting of the Statewide meet in 2001 if a DaimlerChrysler donation is not available. As required by the current Bylaws, these revisions will be voted on at the next Club event/meeting, which is:

SCIO Event - March 25, 2000 - Palm Springs Air Museum & Pond Car Collection

SCIO has set March 25, 2000 for a meeting and tour event in sunny Palm Springs. The planned tour will start at 11:00 a.m. at the exciting Palm Springs Air Museum which houses the world's largest collection of "flight ready" W.W.II era aircraft. After a picnic lunch and a vote on our new Bylaws, we will caravan to the private estate of the Museum's founder, Mr. Robert J. Pond. There we will have a rare opportunity to view one of the most important private automobile collections in the country - consisting or nearly 100 classic, collectible, and special interest automobiles. The admission total for both events is $10.00 per person. A map of the museum location is on the back cover of the newsletter. So mark this date on your calendar, pack your sunglasses and a picnic lunch and we'll see you there. Call any club officer for further information. (Thanks to Jay Weinert for planning this event.)

Statewide Meet - Modesto, May 5, 2000

At the 1999 Statewide meet, the location for the 2000 Imperial Owners Statewide meet was announced as Modesto, CA (original home of George Lucas and "American Graffiti"). The meet is traditionally held on the first weekend of May, and this year the dates are May 5 - 7. The Imperial car show will be on Saturday, so mark your calendars for May 6! The host club is the Imperial Owners Association of Sacramento Valley (IOASV).

The Meet events will include an Imperial caravan to the Hershey Chocolate Factory in Oakdale and a poolside reception on Friday, the Imperial car show and Awards Banquet on Saturday, morning brunch and another Imperial caravan to the Hilmar Cheese Factory on Sunday. You’ll receive an event announcement and details from the IOASV in the next few weeks.

Volunteers Needed!

The last issue of the Imperial Eagle was published for 1998 and the Club’s officers have decided a newsletter will provide better member communication until a new editorial staff is in place. Please call Dave Doty if you can help with the newsletter or the Eagle. The Imperial Eagle has a great history and will be published as a membership extra-cost option when the staff is ready to go. This newsletter can also start a great tradition and needs help with an editor, contributors, a name and a design!

Volunteers are also needed for an ad hoc Events Committee. Not only does the Board need help - and suggestions - to plan events for this year, but our Club will be hosting the 2001 Statewide Meet. We’re off to a running start with site selection (hint: think Scandinavian), but there’s MUCH to do, so now is the time to help with ideas and ground-work, especially to find sponsors and plan the Meet events and tours. Again, give Dave Doty a call.

Eagle’s Nest Merchandise

In addition to the mugs, visors and baseball hats that the Club has long stocked, Dave Doty has added pins, NOS keys and many other unique items.

Also call Dave for back issues of The Imperial Eagle for $3.75 each (subject to availability).

Bob Beissel - In Memoria

Bob was a founding member and very active in the SCIO until he and Jackie moved to Oakdale, Nebraska in 1993. His three great loves were his family, Chrysler products and life. Bob succumbed to lung cancer on July 19, 1999, two months after attending the 1999 Statewide meet in Visalia. Jackie, their three children, eight grand-children and 2 great-grand-children were at Bob’s services.

Bob and Jackie were married 49 years and she said "Life was an adventure with Robert!" For all who knew Bob, this was right on the mark.

Imperials on the Internet

Just a reminder that there are many sources for Imperial information on the Internet. To start, try the following:

The Imperial, by Chrysler (mine):

The On-Line Imperial Club (also a mailing list):

Leslie Kettenhofen’s Many Imperial Links:

The Imperialist (Dave Duricy’s classy site):

Interim editor, Bob Schmitt (

Palm Springs Air Museum

745 N. Gene Autry Trail

Palm Springs, CA 92262 Phone: 760-778-6262

From the Museum brochure:

"No matter how often you visit, there is always something new and exciting to experience:

  • New, spacious 50,000 square foot, air conditioned building, plus vast open spaces with exhibits, aircraft ramp access to the airport. New exhibits added regularly.
  • Flying demonstrations of different aircraft from the collection are both scheduled and unscheduled.
  • On-going lecture series features significance of Air Power, including eyewitness accounts.
  • Four to five temporary exhibition openings throughout the year.
  • Fun-filled Children's activities and scheduled programs.
  • Extensive original aviation art and murals, plus dramatic historic combat photography on display.
  • Many of the Museum's volunteers flew these rare and venerable airplanes, and lived through this epic history.
  • Visiting combat aircraft, historic and modern, are regularly scheduled and displayed.
  • Ideal family entertainment.
  • Historic automobile and military vehicle collections support the main Air Power theme.
  • Continuous movies and videos.
  • Outstanding aircraft and ship model collections.
  • Extensive calendar of programs, ceremonies and events.
  • Unique themed gift shop."



Article I - NAME

The name of this organization shall be the Southern California Imperial Owners Inc. ("SCIO")


The purpose of this organization shall be to provide opportunities for owners of Imperial and Chrysler Imperial automobiles, and other persons interested in these cars, to meet together, tour and display their Imperial and Chrysler Imperial automobiles.


Section 1 The membership of this organization shall consist of owners of Imperial and Chrysler Imperial automobiles and other persons interested in these automobiles.

Section 2 Membership dues shall be $20.00 per individual and/or family membership per annum, payable January 1st of each year. Members will be removed from the SCIO membership roster if dues are unpaid after March 15.


Section 1 The officers shall consist of a President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer. These officers shall comprise the Board of Directors.

Section 2 Duties

A. President - Shall preside at all meetings and shall represent the organization in all matters regarding the organization.

B. Vice-President - Shall take the place of the President and assume those duties in the latter's absence.

C. Secretary - Shall keep records of all meetings, including events and participants.

D. Treasurer - Shall collect annual dues and donations, keep an accurate record of all receipts and expenditures, pay out funds as authorized by the Board of Directors and report income and expenses at the annual meeting or as requested.

E. Board of Directors - shall be authorized to appoint officer(s) in the event of a vacancy, for their remaining term of office.


Section 1 This organization shall meet at the time and place determined by the Board of Directors.

Section 2 One meeting during the year will be designated the Annual Business Meeting. The Annual Business Meeting will be held during the fall of each year. The purpose of the Annual Business Meeting shall be:

A. To elect officers.

B. To receive reports.

C. To act upon revisions of the Bylaws.

D. To transact other business as may properly come before the membership.


Section 1 Officers shall be elected at the Annual Business Meeting.

Section 2 Officers shall be elected for a term of one year.

Section 3 Election shall be by a majority vote of the attending SCIO members at the Annual Business Meeting.


The fiscal year shall be from January 1 to December 31 of each year.


These Bylaws may be amended by a vote of two-thirds of the attending SCIO members. Voting will be done at the Annual Business Meeting of the organization.

Proposed changes to the Bylaws shall be mailed along with the meeting announcement at least two weeks prior to the meeting to all SCIO members.


In those matters of business which require formal parliamentary procedure, Robert’s Rules of Order (Revised), shall govern this organization.

(end of Bylaws)

Membership Application


I would like to join the Southern California Imperial Owners, Inc. Enclosed is my check for $20.00 made out to "Southern California Imperial Owners, Inc."






_________________________ State: _____ Zip: __________

Phone: ________________ E-mail/fax:___________________




Year _______ Model _________________________

List additional Imperials on the reverse

Send this form and a check for the Southern California Imperial Owners, Inc. to:

Nannette Clark-Cook, Treasurer
7178 Forum St.
San Diego, CA 92111-3440 Phone: 858-277-9870


*Optional, to help us know our members better and let us know where to find talent(s)!

Informal Imperial Gathering/Picnic? Chrysler Performance West "Spring Fling 2000", April 14-15. Call Bob, 818-563-1419 if interested.

1975 Imperial For Sale

Here's a California car (now in Northridge) being sold by an honest MOPAR guy - I thought of buying it and have driven it, but passed because of other projects. My summary follows the ad which was posted on the IML web pages:

"Ad No.: 980 - Subject: '75 Imperial LeBaron 4-dr. - Posted on: 1/16/2000 Reply to: Ed Walsh at (or call 818-764-7590, page at 818-973-0517)  82,000 original miles, 440, most power options, brown w/tan top & interior, runs and drives excellent, nice in and out, paint needs to be buffed out. Original California car, registration expired 2 years. Can be driven anywhere. $1,500 firm, If not sold by Spring Fling (April), motor & trans will be taken out and the rest will be junked, so don't hesitate!"

These are my impressions that I've e-mailed to other interested buyers:

"The car has 82K miles and has always been in California. The color is gold/sand (?) with a matching top and a gold tone (or lighter) interior.  Leather just a little dirty, but should look great after cleaning. I was told it has mostly been up north, in rural California, but not always garaged.

Only evident damage is to the dash, which is sun darkened, but not warped or cracked. Everything is pretty nice - the trunk is amazingly clean and the engine compartment is moderately clean. Only a few scratches in the paint (lower rear right), chrome is very good. I should have test rubbed the paint a little, but I'm guessing it would clean and polish fairly well. Top has a few odd stains and perhaps a little rust at very back edge.

The current owner is Tom Yeager, a young mechanic, who bought it from last owner who put a lot on money in it, but blew transmission. So Tom fixed it and has kept it up at parent's cabin, where he said it was used to run errands and put their boat in lake - has a trailer hitch. A/C was working when he bought it, but Freon leaked through a poorly patched hose. One window has stripped gear, but other windows, radio, antenna, OE alarm system, etc. all seem to work fine. There is a "star" where small rock hit windshield.

I drove it - starts easily, runs fairly quietly, drives nicely, but not as nice as my '66! Tires are fair, have tread, but nearly dried out. Cal registration expired 2 years ago."

Write to me privately if you want more info. With tires, a smog check and registration, I think you would have a very decent Imperial.  This seems like a good deal at $1500 - seems like it's in better "beginning" shape than my '66 that I bought about 5 years ago.

Bob Schmitt (Burbank)