||Coming soon - a dedication to Kimberly. . .
Photo Album...To see from whence I came.
|While my gig as a historian is
primarily an indoor activity, I am more than just some paper and pencil
loser. I love camping, backpacking, and cross-country skiing. And if you're
going to live in South Dakota, you had better make peace with winter, Sven,
because more than half of your life will be spent living in it. Nobody
hates snow more than a South Dakotan, but our fluffy snow and freakishly
flat topography make for great
cross-country skiing conditions.
Get your equipment, pack a fun lunch, call some friends and make a day
Good equipment makes outdoor activities
more fun. I purchased my skis (and other good stuff) from
Bean. Another great source of equipment is REI.
I'm a member, and you should really visit one of their stores, Nature Boy.
They are perhaps a bit more "serious" of an outfitter than Bean, and they
support worthy environmental causes.
|Pictured here is Steve Rasmussen while cross-country
skiing, and he's not using Bean skis. Understand?
Magisterial mountains and
surreal lunar-like landscapes await the fortunate backpacker or camper
South Dakota's Black Hills and Badlands, and other great stuff to check
out is just over the border in Wyoming, Minnesota, and Montana. To
see what the heck I'm talking about, see my ADVENTURE
PAGES by clicking PAGE
1 or PAGE 2.
People are sometimes surprised
to learn that I am a serious "car guy." I love reading about them, driving
them, and working on them. I'm not good, so don't call and ask for
me to replace your fuel pump, but few things give me more satisfaction
than turning a wrench.
My car stable actually
houses a rather rare car, a 1951 Kaiser. Kaiser-Frazer: unappreciated
in life, overlooked in death. The love child of western industrialist/wild
man Henry J. Kaiser (Hoover Dam, Liberty Ships, Kaiser Steel), and auto
exec Joseph Frazer (Packard, Chrysler, Willys, and Graham-Paige), K-F built
3/4 of a million autos between the 1947 and 1955 model years in a converted
WW II bomber plant in Michigan, among other sites. It was an interesting
company that built unusual cars. I have owned my little gem for 21 years.
|| My car is a Kaiser Special
Business Coupe, a "stripped" model with no rear seat and a minimum of chrome.
When restored, it will look something like this Kaiser, including in color.
Its loaded with such desirables as overdrive transmission (giving it 5
gears, but it needs 5 more) and radio. I once cranked up the Kaiser's flathead
"Supersonic" 6-cyl. engine, reaching a terrifying 70 m.p.h., when I saw
Jesus calling me home. I have kept it under 50 since.
Sadly, during the endless
journey getting my Ph.D. the Kaiser lapsed into a coma. Recently though,
the patient has began to show some improvement! Body parts began coming
off in September 2002, the powertrain was pulled in February 2002, the
body came off the frame in November 2002, the frame was cleaned and powder
coated in July 2003, and the holes in the body were welded in September
To see photos of the long overdue restoration,
one of the following links:
(Lifting body off frame)
(Powder coating & welding)
(New Engine and front end)
To learn more about Kaisers, Frazers,
Henry J's, Allstates, Darrins, and Willys, check out the
Owners Club International homepage.
||If I make another old car acquisition,
it might be another "orphan," like a Studebaker. I just gotta lotta love
to give. Behold the beautiful 1962-64 Studebaker Hawk. The folks at Stude's
South Bend plant built a beaut here, with a 289 cubic inch V-8, four-speed
floor shift, front-wheel disc brakes, full instrumentation, and bucket
seats. That's not shabby considering what Ward and June Cleaver were driving
|HALL-SCOTT MOTOR CAR COMPANY
|A current research interest of
mine is the Hall-Scott Motor Car Company of Berkeley, California.
HERE to view a brief history of that long-defunct little company and
some photos of its products.
With the 25th anniversary
of my high school graduation fast approaching, last year I put together
a page for the 1978 Class of St. Bernard's High School. Sorry current students
of mine, there are no embarrassing photos here of me with feathered hair,
shiny disco shirts, or gold chain jewelry. Incriminating photos of me do
exist, but they ain't here. Click below to see my SBHS Class of 1978 Reunion
Updated October 2004