About Kokomo Automotive Museum
The Kokomo Automotive Museum is the culmination of the long term dream of the Pioneer Auto Club. The Club, begun in 1951,worked to preserve collector cars of all types, but members had a special fondness for the locally built Haynes and Apperson automobiles. In 1976, the Haynes Apperson Festival was started as a mechanism for raising funds for a local automotive museum. Through many fits and starts, in 1997 a building became available that could be utilized as a museum. By 1998, the former Big R store had been transformed into the City of Firsts Automotive Heritage Museum thanks to countless hours of volunteer labor donated by the Pioneer Auto Club. Over time, ownership of the property changed hands, including a stint as part of Ivy Tech Community College from 2012 to 2016. In that time, many changes to the museum have occurred, including the introduction of revolving themed exhibits, the beginning of reorganization into a themed gallery based museum, the creation of a membership program, and the establishment of several annual fundraising events. In September 2016, the museum hosted a series of automotive-themed events as Kokomo's contribution to the State of Indiana Bicentennial that included the Stutz Club's "Grand STuTZ," the Marmon Club's "Mighty Marmon Muster," Classic Car Club of America's "Indiana Grand Classic," and the "Grand Indiana Bicentennial Motor Muster." The musuem ceased operations at this location on May 1, 2018. The museum will reopen with a new focus in a new facility.