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Sunday, January 30, 2011

Historic Pennsylvania junkyard closing, cars being crushed

Complete 1970 Dodge Challenger for sale at Baughman's junkyard in York, PA.
Crushing end for historic junkyard, mystery solved. The soon-to-be closed Baughman's Auto Salvage near Dover, Pennsylvania has been home to 21 Tri-Five Chevys and more than 900 other vehicles ranging from mid-1930s to late 1970s models for several decades. Junkyardlife recently posted photos and requested info about the 1957 Chevy Bel Airs and 1957 Chevy station wagons rusting in the woods. John Baughman, the junkyard's owner has the answers, some of which may be painful to learn. 


They call it progress
 Seven years ago Baughman purchased C&B Salvage, a rural salvage yard with a vast inventory of classic domestic cars, including the Tri-Five Chevys, in Dover, PA. The Dover yard, surrounded by farmland, for the better part of its 45 years of existence, was recently targeted as a nuisance by new residential developments. A battle with city government combined with the influx of white collar homeowners who didn't understand why they should be subjected to living near a junkyard forced Baughman to close the junkyard. "They're trying to yuppify the whole town," Baughman told 'Old Car Weekly' in a November 2010 article. 
John Baughman, owner of Baughman's Auto Parts in York, PA. John's other yard, Baughman's Salvage Yard in Dover, PA., is closing, 900 cars will be crushed and cleared from the property.

Another junkyard closes, dreams crushed
 After Baughman's cars are crushed and the land is cleared of all traces of 45 years of salvage yard scabs,he plans to sell the property. "The land is worth more to developers, so I'm selling it." 



Salvage parts sales up as the end nears
 Business boomed when word spread that Baughman's Dover junkyard was closing by the end of December 2010. "We sold a sh!t load of stuff," Baughman said. Car enthusiasts searching for rare parts flooded his Dover yard as closing day loomed. Hard to find parts for obscure domestic models such as Edsels, LaSalles, Hudsons and Studebakers were scavenged by old car mavens. About 100 foreign cars, including a 1950s MGA, could be found by diligent junkyard nomads in Baughman's yard.

Aerial map of Baughman's Salvage yard

View Larger Map

What happens to the classic cars?
 Baughman plans to save the most valuable cars and parts from the Dover yard and move them to his other yard, Baughman's Auto Parts in York, Pennsylvania, which he opened in 1985. "We've got 21 Tri-Five Chevys and a guy just found a 390 cubic inch V8 Mercury Marauder engine with solid lifters and 11:1 compression," said Baughman. The York yard, comprised mostly of late model vehicles, will see a few of the complete cars from the Dover yard. A couple of complete Mopars are for sale on Baughman's website.
1973 Dodge Challenger for sale at Baughman's York, PA. Auto Parts.
Money to be made scrapping cars
 A car crusher has been working on the Dover yard for the past two weeks, crushing over 200 cars. "We have 700 more to crush and tons of parts to pick up off the ground. When you crush cars, parts fall all over the place," said Baughman. "Its a big job that we are doing as fast as we can." Current scrap prices are bringing Baughman $14 per hundred pounds. Scrapping out the entire yard should net more than $200,000.
 Recent snow storms have not cooperated with Baughman's plans to clear the land of the multitude of metal. "We just got 6-to-8 inches of snow covering everything up, which is going to slow us down." 


Classic junkyard closes, a moment of silence please
 Thousands of desirable parts and dozens of restorable project cars will be lost amid the acres of vehicles being crushed at Baughman's. Older junkyards are a glimpse at a simpler time when cars were repairable and worth remembering. Each day a junkyard closes, the number of salvageable parts and vehicles diminish. It will be a sad day when the last load of '50-era parts leaves the junkyard on a scrap truck. 


Baughman's Auto Parts in York, Pennsylvania will be home to the "good stuff" leftover from Dover junkyard.
Baughman's Auto Parts
440 Eberts Lane
York, PA 17403
Call 717-846-3944 or 877-200-4056
Mon.-Fri. 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Saturday 8 a.m.-3 p.m.


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