July 30, 2019
Oklahoma History Center Receives Gift of 1910 Selden Roadster
OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma History Center has received the gift of a 1910 Selden Roadster from donor Grace Boulton, wife of Oklahoma native and longtime Oklahoma City businessman Don Carrol Boulton. Don was a noted antique car collector who focused on cars from the Brass Age—pre-1915 cars that were outfitted with shiny brass lights and trim.
This particular automobile, a 1910 Selden Roadster, Model 35, was purchased new in 1910 in Oklahoma City by Charles Petrasek and driven until 1928. Selden automobiles were manufactured in Rochester, New York, and bear the name of the inventor of the gasoline automobile, George B. Selden. Selden owned the U.S. patent on the gasoline automobile until Henry Ford broke it in 1913.
Don Boulton was nationally known as an expert in the acquisition and restoration of Brass Age automobiles and served as the national president for the Horseless Carriage Club of America (HCCA). This group was devoted to the preservation of pre-1916 cars. Of note is the long-standing tradition of the local organization of HCCA to meet at Don’s car barn on Saturday mornings for donuts and coffee. Made up of several of Don’s contemporaries and colleagues, the group called itself the “Donut Boys.” Grace, his wife of 70 years, was his partner in most of his auto activities. Boulton passed away September 7, 2018, five days after his 93rd birthday. With help from friends and family, Grace went about the process of auctioning off Don’s collection to other enthusiasts. The Selden was put back to be donated to the Oklahoma History Center to preserve his legacy and love.
This Selden Roadster will be on exhibit in the Devon Great Hall at the Oklahoma History Center until August 1. After that, it will be placed on long-term exhibition on the third floor of the James C. and Teresa K. Day Foundation Atrium for public viewing.
The Oklahoma History Center is a division of the Oklahoma Historical Society and is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, National Archives and is an accredited member of the American Alliance of Museums. The mission of the Oklahoma Historical Society is to collect, preserve and share the history and culture of the state of Oklahoma and its people. Founded in 1893 by members of the Territorial Press Association, the OHS maintains museums, historic sites and affiliates across the state. Through its research archives, exhibits, educational programs and publications the OHS chronicles the rich history of Oklahoma. For more information about the OHS, please visit www.okhistory.org.