We have a car here on our website that has a known racing history as a Baldwin Special. This car was originally raced by owner William M. Hanssen of Santa Barbara, California. Records show it participated in at least four races during the 1956 season and was entered in each as a Baldwin Special. It also saw action in 1955 and in the March 12th, 1955 Preliminary Palm Springs race, Hanssen shared the track with notables such as Carroll Shelby, Ernie McAfee, Akton Miller, and Chuck Daigh. Daigh drove the Troutman-Barnes special that is currently featured in the Peterson Museum.
Our subject car was billed as a Baldwin, but unlike the other three Baldwin Specials, it does not have the same body style with cycle fenders. Instead, it looks and is dimensionally the same as the Daigh car, the Troutman-Barnes Special. We think the similarities are too profound to just accept it as a close copy. Could this car, known as a Baldwin Special, also have roots as a Troutman and Barnes project? One of the former owners, Baron Margot, a notable metal artist in LA, has compared the cars and believes it to be quite possiblethe car disappeared from 1960-1980 when Baron Margot found it on the streets of LA.
We would like to set the record straight on this California Special and are asking for comments on this mystery. Any information that we receive will also be used to update the cars status on Tam’s Old Race Car Site, where this car has been a mystery car for quite some time.
*** We are proud to announce that the Hanssen Family was reunited with the Baldwin after selling it 53 years years ago.