Field Of Dreams: Massive South Dakota Auction

Barn Finds reader Brian K. spotted a massive auction happening over the next few days in South Dakota, with cars and trucks stretching from the 1920s to the 1990s. It’s hard to tell whether it’s a salvage yard or someone’s extensive private collection, but vehicles like this 1979 Dodge Aspen R/T here on K-Bid.com are indicative of what you’ll find in this field of dreams. Most of the cars are intact, too, as even this R/T’s missing rear spoiler can be found stored inside the clean interior. 

What is perhaps most impressive about the collection is how well all of the vehicles have held up despite years of outdoor storage. If this was a salvage yard, it was a closely gaurded one as windows and doors remain closed to keep the insides intact. This super cool GMC delivery van here on K-Bid.com has been converted to a camper, and the home-brew conversion actually looks quite good inside.

Among the more imposing vehicles is this Dodge CT800 wrecker shown here on K-Bid.com. The dual rear axle and longer wheelbase leads me to believe this rig routinely performed heavy-duty rescue, but despite a working career, the body appears quite nice. The towing apparatus is still attached and this vintage Dodge tow truck looks like it could return to work tomorrow.

Here’s a rather ordinary car that appears to be in excellent condition (well, as close to excellent as is feasible for being stored on the high plains for many years). This 1970 Pontiac Tempest here on K-Bid.com retains its engine and transmission, and also has a surprisingly decent interior that just needs some fresh cloth and the headliner re-attached to be downright presentable.

Speaking of interiors, let’s chat for a minute about how clean some of these cars are inside. It blows my mind, and really makes us curious as to the backstory on this collection. A true salvage facility would rarely have cars this nice inside, like this 1980 Chevy Malibu Classic here on K-Bid.com that is your classic Grandma-driven vehicle. The icing on the cake is the box of Kleenex still sitting on the rear parcel shelf. Total grandma move!

If the domestic iron isn’t your thing, there are a few foriegn jobs in the lot as well. Take this sweet Hillman Imp here on K-Bid.com – this bulldog-like Brit creation may be missing its headlights, but it looks quite solid otherwise. The rear-mounted engine is still with the car, and it isn’t nearly as rusty as you’d expect. All of the glass is intact and the hubcaps are still affixed; it just needs a matching rear chrome bumper to look even more complete.

Here’s another one of my personal favorites, largely because it looks like it could be driven right out of the yard with a set of fresh tires and wheels. This 1977 Chevy Camaro LT here on K-Bid.com comes with a 350 / four-barrel, manual transmission and air conditioning. That’s a healthy options list that looks even better when the Chevy’s rust-free bodywork is taken into consideration.

Finally, is this the rig that brought all of these classics to their final resting place? This brawny 1942 Dodge Power Wagon wrecker body is one of the few listings that the auctioneer describes as “ran when parked.” We find this intriguing for a few reasons, not the least of which is very few of the vehicles are described this way. Perhaps this Dodge’s days of hauling home classics is far from over. You’ll find this vintage wrecker here on K-Bid, along with pages of possibilities.

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Comments

  1. Wendell

    Being a native of SD the condition of the cars does not surprise me. Sitting in the field they are not exposed to the salt fro. The highways, the snow merely melts off. I may have to take a trip back home!

    1
  2. jdjonesdr

    Smart move by these junk yard owners to auction off what they have instead of sitting on it and watching them all rust away.

    1
  3. Jay M

    Power Wagon is bad a$$
    Love it!
    Would be amazing advertising for a towing company.

  4. D

    Some good looking units there.

    1
  5. Vin in NJ

    That Tempest looks nice, but unfortunately there is no title, Being sold as parts only.

  6. Jamie Palmer Jamie Staff

    I want the Imp. Someday…

  7. Oil Slick

    Does anyone know how one could get a title for one of these parts only cars?

    • Anthony R in RI

      Not all states require a title for cars this old..Rhode Island only requires titles for cars 2001 and newer

  8. Rattlinglikenuggets

    Fascinating post. The Hillman Imp was manufactured 3 miles from where I grew up. You can still see the effect that the closure of the Chrysler factory had on Linwood almost 40 years on. If I lived in the US I’d definitely find a way to get that Camaro back on 4 wheels as it’s so awesomely 1970s 😀

  9. mike d

    in New York State, titles were issued after 73, a good guess would be a bill of sale w/ the VIN SHOULD satisfy most DMVs .. my own pet peeve, now, is either the owner or the auctioneer does NOT KNOW what their vehicles are, wrong years, wrong models .. even wrong make! I spotted a few cars that interested me and I wish I lived closer.. a casual observance that the interiors on most of the cars were trashed and were without a steering wheel ( what’s up with that? ) bidding is low, for now there is a month to go.. good chance to get a good parts car, OR one to fix up ( rod?) wouldn’t feel guilty about rodding any of these

    • Miguel

      It looks like a lot of theft has happened over the years.

      Nobody parks cars without wheels and tires directly on the ground.

      I would bet most of those cars have no floors.

      1
  10. Danno

    How often do you see a ’57 Chev C6500 4×4? Perfect tow vehicle for showing up at the show & shine with your trailer queen.

  11. angliagt

    I should buy that ’80 Malibu,as I have a set of rear seat belts,
    rear door mechinisms , NOS brake booster,& a new mater cylinder for a
    ’79.I realized they were new,as they came out of a new ’79 Malibu police car.
    Don’t know what else I’d do with them.

  12. Rolf Poncho 455

    That Pontiac looks like it can be saved and back on the road in no time
    hope the motor and trans is savable

  13. Howard A

    Had to come out of hiding for this one. This is quite a collection. I agree, the person categorizing this, doesn’t know a lot, but I’m sure, in all fairness, it’s probably overwhelming for them. There’s quite a mix here, but nothing really old, say older than the ’50’s. The car next to the Imp, was my 1st car, a Renault 4CV, and the “30’s White” truck is a Diamond T.( I could go on) Also, I think it WAS the Dodge wrecker that brought them in, a rare truck in itself.( the front fenders are on a hinge, and swing out for service, and half the motor is in the cab), as that Power Wagon won’t pull a bus. Note to all, this is where the plausible classic car projects start, before the vultures get their hands on them. Great find.

    2
    • Jeff Lavery Jeff Staff

      Well said, Howard – thanks for coming out of hiding!

    • Jay M

      Howard is right, the vultures will be circling.
      It would be interesting to track how many end up on eBay or CL, with greatly inflated prices and creative back stories…

      2
  14. Jason T

    I hate the no title car salespeople. Even if you could get a new title in another state there is no guarantee the vin won’t come up as stolen at a later date, likely after it has been restored.

    • Mark-A

      Surely that would be part of the “Buyers DUE DILIGENCE process”, before sinking thousands into a restoration or maybe its just as an Child of the 70s I’m NOT afraid to apply COMMON Sense before almost ANY purchase? 😉

      2
  15. Danny

    So its been a year. .. those Original auctions ended at such small amounts.
    Wonder if anyone seen them resold for higher prices

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