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Oral history interviews on Z. Taylor Vinson

Accession: 2013-265


This oral history project was initiated to provide supplementary material for Hagley’s 2015 exhibit, Driving Desire, that feature items from the Z. Taylor Vinson Transportation Collection. The three interviewees are; Rick Shnitzler, Fred Simeone, and Yann Saunders, all were personal acquaintances of Z. Taylor Vinson as well as highly involved in either collecting or dealing auto ephemera and/or automobiles.


  • 2013-2014



3 item(s)

Historical Note

This project was initiated to provide supplementary material for Hagley’s exhibit, Driving Desire, that featured items from the Z. Taylor Vinson collection of transportation ephemera. The three interviewees, Rick Shnitzler, Fred Simeone, and Yann Saunders, were all personal acquaintances of Z. Taylor Vinson and collectors and/or dealers of automobile ephemera and/or automobiles.

For over sixty years, Zachary Taylor Vinson (1933-2009) amassed a large and comprehensive collection of printed material documenting on the history transportation, particularly automobiles. Vinson collected trade literature from additional sources, including, but not limited to, automobile manufacturers, fellow collectors, memorabilia dealers, auto shows, and auctions. He eventually amassed so much material that he built an addition to his Virginia home to store it all, which he referred to as his “Autotorium.”

Scope and Content

This collection contains oral history interviews with associates of the automobile ephemera collector Z. Taylor Vinson. Interviews were coordinated by the Center for the History of Business and conducted by Gretchen Pruett.

Major topics of the interviews include collecting, trading, and selling automobile ephemera; the life of Z. Taylor Vinson; the role of advertisements and automobile literature in selling cars; changes in automobile technology and marketing; collecting as a general practice; the impact of communications technology on automobile ephemera collecting; methods by which collectors and dealers acquired literature; and the car enthusiast community that facilitated such an exchange. All three interviewees also describe how dealers and collectors assign value to automobile ephemera, and ways in which the Internet has altered the value of literature and changed the relationship between collectors and dealers. Production and distribution of automobile advertisements, brochures, catalogues, and other publication is another key topic.

Existence and Location of Copies

View the collection online in the Hagely Digital Archives.

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Portions of the interviews are restricted for use in media broadcast or video presentations. For more information please send an inquiry to

Language of Materials


Additional Information

Finding Aid & Administrative Information

Oral history interviews on Z. Taylor Vinson
Abby Adams and Laurie Rizzo
Description rules:
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description:
Script of description:
This project was made possible by a grant from the Delaware Humanities Forum.

Repository Details

Repository Details

Part of the Audiovisual Collections Repository

PO Box 3630
Wilmington Delaware 19807 USA