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Tennessee’s Denton Auto Parts

Taking a Trip to Tennessee

Leroy Drittler - September 09, 2011 09:00 AM

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An Olds Cutlass with the 4-4-2 option appears to have parts to give.

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Brownie, the official junkyard dog at Denton Auto Parts, poses on the fender of a 1963 Ford Galaxie 500 fastback. Brownie goes where Clark Denton goes. When the weather is cold, Brownie has been known to hitch a ride in the warm comfort of Denton’s coat.

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Denton said when he got this ’68 Dodge Charger, it still had its factory four-speed transmission. There are about 10 more Chargers in the yard.

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There are parts available on this 1964 Ford Falcon Futura two-door hardtop.

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There are still some good parts remaining on this 1951 Ford two-door hardtop including the FordomaticDrive emblem on the trunk lid.

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A 1953 Cadillac two-door hardtop is one of the vintage cars parked in the wooded lot by the office. It is blocked in by several vehicles, including a 1964 Pontiac Grand Prix. Denton said the only way he could buy this car from the owner was to adopt the kittens who had made the interior their home.

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This 1965 Buick Riviera has the Gran Sport option which included a 360hp V-8 with dual four-barrel carburetors, twin exhausts and positive traction differential.

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Parked near the office is a complete 1963 Crown Imperial four-door hardtop.

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Denton says he owned this 1949 Chevrolet two-door for over 40 years.

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Missing since 1960, Lincoln re-introduced the two-door hardtop body style in 1966. It was the least expensive model in the line-up and the second most popular. This one has maintenance records in the glove box.

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This 1974 Fawn Beige Matador came from the factory with an automatic transmission and 304 cid engine. There are several more AMC products in the yard.

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The four-barrel carburetor is gone on this straight eight 1953 Packard, but the intake is still there.

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Parts have been removed from this rusty 1959 Thunderbird, but there are still some left.

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The elements have not been kind to this 1964 Ford Galaxie 500 convertible, but it may still yield a few parts.

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A 1954 Plymouth Savoy four-door sedan still has parts available.

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Denton gave this Austin wagon to a grandson named Austin. About a week later, and before the grandson even saw the car, a large poplar tree fell and crushed it. The grandson did salvage the Austin nameplate.

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Parked below a small rock bluff is a 1957 Mercury Commuter four-door hardtop station wagon. It is apparently a late year model as it has four headlights.

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This 1958 Rambler Six Series 10 “Plain Jane” is one of several AMC products in the yard. Denton mentioned he bought several from an AMC dealer going out of business.

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18 Tin worms have done a number on the front fenders of a 1957 Fairlane four-door hardtop.

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A 1962 Lark appears to have some usable parts remaining.

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Rusty floors show through on the inside of this 1952 Dodge Coronet four-door that belongs to Denton’s son. It is for sale as a complete car and is equipped with the Gyromatic transmission.

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Denton’s son owns this 1951 IHC L-110 wagon. It is for sale only as a complete unit. Denton thinks at one time it may have been used as an Air Force ambulance.

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A few years ago, Denton decided to count and number the vehicles in his salvage yard. Along the way, he lost count and really doesn’t know exactly how many vehicles are in the 25-acre yard, but it appears there are at the very least a couple of thousand.

Most of the vehicles you’ll find are from the ’50s and ’60s. Trees have grown up around them and they have spilled out onto access roads effectively blocking the way. For those reasons, Denton says most vehicles are not for sale as whole units, but he will remove and sell parts off of nearly all of them. It would be too hard to cut the trees or move all of vehicles out of the way just to pull another vehicle out.

The Denton Auto Parts office has been in the present location about 47 years with the salvage yard located less than a mile away. Denton also has about 30 or so vintage vehicles parked in a wooded lot beside the office. At one time, he operated a restaurant, pool room, and car lot at the office location, but a state highway widening project removed that 40 x 40-foot building.

Denton likes dealing in old vehicles and loves to talk about them. He is also a collector of just about anything old, and has several buildings filled with items accumulated from auctions and other sources.

 

About The Yard

The yard is usually open from around 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on weekdays and 8:00 a.m. to noon on Saturday, but those hours are not cast in stone. Denton does not allow customers to remove parts, so sometimes he has to close the office during the day to remove parts or to take care of other business. Unescorted browsing is not allowed.

The telephone number is (865) 933-7370. The street address and mailing address is 2366 Highway 25 West, New Market, TN 37820. To get to Denton Auto Parts from Interstate 40 in eastern Tennessee, take exit 407, then Highway 66 North for about 3 miles to Highway 25/70 where the office is located on the northwest corner of the intersection.

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