Live Auctions

Field of Dreams: Barn Finds in Ventura

A listing for what seems like a junkyard cleanout with a claimed 60 vehicles available just popped up on craigslist. Details are hazy but the seller says there’s a treasure trove of cars and trucks, and based on the photos, we see several interesting vehicles potentially worthy of resuing. In this picture alone, a Checker Marathon cab, Thunderbird and what may be a Country Squire wagon are visible. Find the listing here on craigslist (or go here if it disappears).

Here’s where it gets interesting for yours truly, the resident Euro car nerd: that looks like a super rare Mercedes-Benz Ponton Wagon, which was available in extremely limited numbers in the U.S. and built by a coachbuilder outside of the factory’s walls. To see one languishing in a junkyard is truly a shame, especially if it’s worth restoring. What other classics can you identify in this picture?

The seller says all vehicles will be sold with a bill of sale only but he does have the necessary information to apply for a reconstructed title if you live in a state that requires it. The pictures show vehicles in a wide range of conditions, and trucks like this one with its sun-beaten paint and tires completely dry-rotted away indicate long periods of standing. The question is, where were all of these classics pulled from?

Vehicles are scattered fairly haphazardly, and the presence of plastic covering the broken driver’s window of this Cadillac make it more likely these were found in a private collection than an actual junkyard. There’s no pricing information listed and the seller is only responding to phone calls, so if anyone calls about that Mercedes Ponton, I’d love to know what you learn. Leave updates in the comments below if you check out this collection of barn finds.


  1. Dave Mc

    Looks like a ’60 el cam I like those. And a Checker?

  2. Fred w.

    NO titles in a title state? Hmmmm…

  3. Superdessucke

    I see Fred Sanford’s truck I think!

    • Jeffro

      That’s cause this obviously has to be Fred Sanford’s yard!

      Like 1
  4. Mitch Ross Member

    Checker cab or Checker Marathon, not both

    • Tim Rusling

      It was up to the taxi buyer whether he got the standard issue A11 or long wheelbase A11E, or pay a few more bucks for the A12 / A12E Marathon. The A12 I had for 24 years is now in France – soon to hit the road again following a refurbishment.

      Like 1
  5. The_Driver

    I only lived briefly in Ventura, but I worked in Camarillo. There was a shop between Camarillo and Oxnard, that had like 50 El Caminos and Rancheros. When I was a child, my grandpa had a 396 El Camino, so I always had a soft spot for them. Finding that El Camino/Ranchero yard, was HEAVENLY!

  6. Dave Wright

    They are in Taft………a long way from Ventura.

  7. Ken Carney

    Looks like a ’56 Packard Clipper 4-door ahead of the El Camino. Used to
    have one back in my younger days. Mine ran a 348 CI V-8 mated to a 4-speed tranny. That thing was a beast! After fixing the rust in the bed and
    floors, I had a great hauler for band equipment or whatever else I needed
    to carry. Bought it off a friend of my Mom’s for $150.00 in ’71! Those were the days!

    • Vince H

      56 Clipper had the same tail light as the 57-58. Probably a 55.

  8. Ross W. Lovell

    Greetings All,

    One pick shows a Mercedes Ambulance or estate wagon, though hard to tell if it was homemade or not.

  9. angliagt angliagt Member

    When I first read this,I was thinking that wasn’t right,
    as Ventura was overrun with wildfires.Being in Taft makes more sense.
    I hate it when people (over) post on out of the area craigslists.
    I wonder if Robin William’s ’60 Continental is
    there somewhere.

  10. Brakeservo

    The Mercedes is not a Ponton but a fintail. Either a hearse or ambulance. Probably decayed beyond any reasonable hope of restoration, but if it’s a 300 with a manual transmission might be a fun car. I suspect if its a 220S or SE based car it may not have enough power to get out of it’s own way.

  11. David Miraglia

    I’ll take the Checker and the T bird out of all of them.

  12. Donald Trautman

    did I see a 59 El Camino in that 2nd picture?

    • JRP

      Not a 59. It’s a 60. Note the spear shaped trim on the quarter panel.


    Any wagons??

    • Kim Hayes

      We have lots of wagons!

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