The Drapanas Estate Auction

The Drapanas Estate

I know where I want to be on August 22nd – Buffalo, New York! If it were close by I would already be making arrangements to get an early preview of the Alexander Drapanas Collection, which is going to auction on the 22nd of August. What you see in this photo is just a small glimpse of the collection, which includes over 50 classic cars. As I looked over the impressive collection, I decided to look up the man behind it and I have to say, it sounds like he was someone we would have enjoyed getting to know. It actually kind of makes me sad that we often don’t see or hear about collections like this until after their owner passes away. Just from looking at his collection, you can tell Dr. Drapanas had a passion for sports cars, but he also had a few American cars, motorcycles, and scooters thrown in for good measure. Reader Wayne N tipped us off to this auction, which can be previewed here at Schultz Auctioneers.

1955 Jaguar XK140 Race Car

We don’t often talk about the actual individuals behind these collections, but that’s typically because there isn’t much information available about them. A quick search revealed that Alexander was a dentist in Buffalo and was known for his two great passions, squash and cars. I haven’t the slightest clue how to play squash or what it really even is, but I can say I understand and associate with his love of cars! From what I could find, he was not only a successful squash player but had some success in SCCA racing. He even raced a Jaguar XK120 and a Ralt RT-5!

1947 Delahaye 135M

This collection really is quite impressive and includes not only a number of rare Jaguars, but also includes a Delahaye and an Overlands. It appears that many of the cars were either well kept survivors or have undergone complete restorations at some point. Just looking at some of the other cars in his collection, you can tell that he bought cars that were fun to drive, regardless of value. He has several MG Midgets, a late Fiat 124 Spider, and an Austin Healey 100-6 with a Chevy small block! While 100-6s are going up in value, I’m sure when he bought these cars, it wasn’t for their monetary value, but to enjoy!

Parts Collection

While I’m sure it is hard for his family to break up his collection, I’m sure it will bring them some joy to see these cars go to good homes. Hopefully as many as possible can make it back to the road! While I never met Dr. Drapanas, after looking at his collection and reading about him I wish we could have featured his collection while he was still with us. The cars we own, collect, and cherish tell a story, but it isn’t ever quite like the story we tell ourselves. If any of you happen to know more about this collection or Dr. Drapanas, please share! So which of these cars would you like to have in your collection someday?

Fast Finds

Comments

  1. JW

    Remarkable collection, I affectionately admire the 50 Ford as that was the first car I can remember we had when I was 5 years old. Not as cool looking with the red rims but still a nice car. I would love to have it.

  2. RayT Member

    I could spend much more money there than I can afford. A couple of Austin-Healeys, a Jaguar or two, the Alfa, the ’50 Ford, perhaps a Spridget or two….the total bill would be pretty hefty.

    A buyer would want to be sure the parts missing from some cars are actually somewhere in that space. It appears that the good dentist was a tinkerer, and I’d say a lot of these cars will need plenty of work to make them presentable.

  3. Chris A.

    Does anyone recognize the white car that sort of looks like a pre-WWI Mercer Raceabout? Maybe a Model T with a Mercer replica body? I can’t tell from the one picture.

    • Jamie Palmer Jamie Staff

      Chris, when I click on the picture it says 1911 Overland 52 Speedster…at least I think that’s the one you are talking about. Beautiful car!

  4. david

    did not see them all my finger got tired but awwwwwwwwwwsome

  5. kenzo

    The A/H with the Chevy small block would be an absolute blast to cruise in. or the black Ford.

  6. jim s

    i think i know where all the big healey clubs will be meeting on 8/22. what a collection. i think this will bring in a lot of money for estate. great finds.

  7. John H

    Beware this auctioneer, For Jaguars there is no such thing as “appears to be numbers matching” because the motor, tranny, body etc were matched at assembly. This is simply dishonest. Either the car has a Jaguar Heritage certificate that confirms #s matching or not, Wisely, Jaguar Heritage does not share original #s, They only verify whether your’s are correct. Caveat emptor!

  8. Steven

    Josh,

    I truly appreciate your tribute to Alex. I represent the estate, and first met Alex at a race track where we were doing some spring testing and sorting out. That was 25 years ago. I was amazed by his speed, his 6′-4″ squeeze into the Ralt, but more so by his gentile approach to life. He was my friend, and we shared passions for cars, racing, anitiques and music. What you see in the warehouse is after we cleaned out the antiques, bicycles, pianos, architectural jewels, record collection, light fixtures, and tools that would have filled any restoration shop to the rafters. An eclectic gentleman, he also fixed my teeth and introduced me to his eternal love, and it is she who I am committed to helping in the disposition of his estate. So this is also personal. We have described the cars as we know them to be – sadly, Alex’s passing left some gaps, which is understandable. These cars have been in the warehouse for 20-30 years. Do we know all there is on each car? No. Are we honest? Yes. John H, while I have spent considerable time to uncover the data on each car, I cannot guarantee the accuracy, which is also understandable under the circumstances. For you to claim dishonesty without knowing any of the facts certainly does not speak well to your character, however, I do agree with your warning that bidders should indeed do their own due diligence as anyone should when bidding at a no-reserve auction. Our statement that the vehicles appear numbers matching is as far as we can go without making certifications we can’t. Anyone knowledgeable on these marques will know what they are looking at, we are just trying to help. These cars have been sitting in a controlled environment for as much as 30 years. We’re selling them at no reserve. It’s the best we can do under less than ideal circumstances.
    Josh, again, thanks for your tribute, it means a lot to the estate! I will forward your thoughts to the estate, I am sure they will be comforted by your words.
    Sincerely, Steve Groh

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