Rossman’s Auto Salvage
100 Vintage Cars Survive a Major Crushing
Joe Sharretts - December 22, 2011 10:00 AM
One of the newer arrivals at Rossman’s yard is a pair of pickup trucks from the early ’50s. The first is a Ford and the second is the Chevy pictured here.
This ’49 Plymouth is currently the oldest car sitting in the main yard. Hopefully, it will be staying put for a long while.
This tan ’64 Nova is a perfect example of a complete car in the yard. There are four first-generation Novas currently in stock.
This is one of many early Mustangs in the back rows. It has already donated several of its major components
A ’62 Corvair convertible is one of five that survived the crush. While it has some rust issues, it still has a lot of great parts.
A ’64 Rambler 220 is starting to become a tough find in any salvage yard. This one was probably kept because of its incredible condition and completeness.
This ’64 Plymouth Belvedere is in amazing condition for being a salvage yard car. It obviously led a pampered life before being retired.
In one photo, we have three decades of GM products dated 1957 to 1972.
This 1964 Fairlane four-door is another great example of a parts car that could do wonders for so many other restorations.
This ’68 Oldsmobile is sadly too far gone to ever restore. As a parts source, it would be useful.
For the Cadillac crowd, we show a 1962 that would help out with any of your needs
An unusual Falcon station wagon would definitely be a fun car to drive around if it were to be fixed up. It could be done due to the fact that it is all there.
This once proud 1960 Impala has been retired and now is serving on parts duty.
Although it looks like a car, this ’51 Chevy 3100 is actually part of the truck family. It spent its life serving as a delivery vehicle.
Sometimes the coolest looking cars are the basic lowest end models, like this Valiant 100. This one is also one of the best preserved vehicles in house right now.
If someone saves it now, this ’68 Camaro might not go for parts. First-generation Camaros are starting to get hard to find in the salvage yard scene. Rossman has three.
This ’61 Impala is falling apart all over. Since the interior is in pretty good condition, the sheetmetal would need to be replaced in order to restore it.
This ’63 Tempest LeMans is the newest addition to the collection. It was set aside instead of crushed due to its condition. This car will probably never go for parts.
It is a shame that this ’57 Ranchero is way too far gone to restore. These cars and parts are very rare. This is only the second one we have found in the past 10 years of yard crawling.
This car is a total mystery. It is the oldest car in the yard either from the late ’30s or early ’40s.
While finding a 1966 Bel Air in a salvage yard is pretty common, finding one this clean is very rare.
This ’76 Ford survived the crush and may be parted out. It sits at the top of the hill in the general yard.
A Corvair sits out of the yard in a section known as “the pit”. The pit used to contain 100 basket case classics, which have since been cleared out and crushed. Only this and a ’46 Dodge remain.
This ’65 Dodge sits across the road from the yard with several other cars in limbo. Its fate needs to be decided. Maybe a reader will field this tough question with an offer to buy it.
Here’s a line-up of restored vehicles that Mark has already done. There are at least 50 cars at this one spot alone
When the value of scrap metal is up, we hear it: “Prices are up. Let’s crush all of these picked over vintage vehicles”.
Then comes an even more familiar story: “These old cars sat around for years. This is a small town. Nobody is restoring one of these. Get it out of the way.” We hear these lines all the time and only wish we could visit all yards in the country before it’s too late.
As we arrived at Rossman’s Auto Salvage and Recycling Center located in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, we saw a late ’40s Chevy truck on the back of a flatbed headed for the crusher. Just one day before, they crushed a ’52 Dodge and a ’50 Cadillac.
Luckily, about 15 vintage vehicles in the general yard survived the crush. In addition, the last two rows of the yard contain around 70 vehicles that are yard owner Mark Rossman’s parts cars for his own projects. All told, including pockets of cars here and there near the yard, about 100-plus cars remain, ranging from 1949 to 1976, with a few being even older.
Mark started the business in 1989. The yard has a 1,200 car capacity and a huge pile of scrap metal in the center that is purchased from the public. In addition, they will do repair work, restorations, and body work. Browsing is allowed, but we highly recommend that you ask before pulling a part. Mark will sell parts from the last two rows, but only if he will not need them himself.
After the visit, Mark and his son showed us the personal collection of show cars and future projects stashed in several locations. His personal fleet ranges from a ’39 Chevy to a Yenko Camaro.
We will continue to scour the back roads for these vintage collections and hopefully bring our readers as many stories as we can before they are thinned out or disposed of entirely. Once crushed, these parts are good to nobody.
About the Yard
Rossman’s Auto Salvage & Recycling Center is located at 10 Morning Glory Rd., Lewistown PA 17044. They can be reached by calling (717) 543-6042. Hours are: Monday to Friday 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturdays 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. From U.S. 322W, take exit 522 (N. Walnut St.). Make a right and go 7 miles. Make a left on Alfarata Rd. and go 1.3 miles. The yard is on the right.