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Microcar Exhibit Returns To Cookeville History Museum

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Microcar Exhibit Returns To Cookeville History Museum

The Cookeville History Museum welcomes you to its latest microcar exhibit in collaboration with the Lane Motor Museum in Nashville.

Lane Motor Museum Education Director Rex Bennett said microcars are unusually small vehicles that were made in Europe after World War II because they were easy to produce amid economic struggles. Bennett said microcars allow for a novel way to tell the story of the post-World War II economy.

“When you see a version of an automobile that’s just weird and strange and different, and in this case tiny, you know, it’s really just for one or two people in most cases, it tricks something in the brain to think, ‘Well that’s – that’s an unusual way to do a car. Why? What is this? I want to learn more. I want to know what – why this came to be,’” Bennett said.

Bennett said the microcars are primarily made of fiberglass because manufacturers discovered ways to house small scooter and motorcycle engines in cheap fiberglass after the war and sell them as basic transportation. He said this will be the third collaboration between Lane Motor Museum and the Cookeville History Museum since the first microcar exhibit in Cookeville in 2019.

“People, I think, get a little worn out with battles and the politics that happened afterward,” Bennett said. “But there’s so many things that World War II created and things that came about after the war that a lot of folks just don’t know about, even in our everyday lives. This is a – kind of an interesting gateway into that world of learning about a history that is actually becoming lost as that generation passes away.”

Bennett said he coordinated the original deal between the museums because he works at the Lane Motor Museum and is on the board of the Friends of the Cookeville History Museum.

“It came up in conversation in 2019 of, ‘You know, I think I could fit several of these little tiny cars in our exhibit space in the front of our history museum,’” Bennett said. “And so I did some measuring and selected a few cars, and it turned out that that exhibit in 2019 was the most attended exhibit in the Cookeville History Museum’s history.”

Bennett said the exhibit is free to the public and will be at the Cookeville History Museum until April 27.


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