Tom Cotter Needs Your Help Locating Barn Finds

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Tom Cotter has written an awesome series of books on barn finds, most recently, 50 Shades of Rust: Barn Finds You Wish You’d Discovered. This weekend, Tom hits the road in his 1938 Ford Woody in search of the next great barn finds, and he’s looking for your help.

Tom Cotter is challenging himself to find these cars — under the pressure of a week long road trip — to populate stories for his next book:

I thought maybe I could write a real “reality book,” where we actually do discover cars on the run.

Thus, I decided to approach my Motorbooks Publisher Zack Miller. It wasn’t a hard sell, convincing him that I could write 45,000 words after spending 14 days on the road. I’ve written six barn-find books already (Cobra in the Barn, 50 Shades of Rust, etc.), and they seem to have built a loyal following.

So here it is: at the end of September, I’ll pull out of my driveway in Davidson, N.C., and either turn left or turn right; I won’t know until that day. Brian Barr and I will spend two weeks documenting our adventures for the book, but also on social media.

And luckily we’ll be joined by photographer extraordinaire Michael Alan Ross. Michael is a great friend whom I worked with on the book Rockin’ Garages. I think you’ll appreciate the higher quality photography in this effort than in my other barn-find books.

Once we hit the road – in my 1939 Ford Woody – we will be knocking on doors and looking behind buildings in search of vintage tin.

Wish us luck; I hope we don’t get shot by some ornery farmer.

And here is the best part: YOU CAN BE INVOLVED IN THIS BOOK! Once we determine what states we will be visiting, you can tell us of forgotten cars you know about in that area. (HELLO, TOM: MY UNCLE LOUIE LIVES NEAR SMITHVILLE, AND HIS NEXT DOOR NEIGHBOR HAS A BACKYARD FULL OF OLD DEUSENBERGS. YOU MIGHT WANT TO CHECK THEM OUT.)

And each day, we will be posting a couple of teaser photos and a short story about the cars we find that day.

We don’t know exactly what direction we will be traveling yet, but do know that we will be ending our journey at the Hershey AACA National Meet that runs from October 8 – 11, 2014.

Cotter’s trip starts tomorrow, September 26  and wraps up on October 10 at the Hershey AACA National Meet on October 10, where he’ll be in the Hemmings Motor News booth.
His trip is taking throughout Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Maryland, so if you’re in those locales, don’t hesitate to hit Tom up with suggestions.
You can contact Tom either via email at, or via the Twitter hashtag #BarnFindRoadTrip.
If they see Tom in his Woody, take a picture and share it with the hashtag #BeACotterSpotter
Craig Fitzgerald

Craig Fitzgerald

Writer, editor, lousy guitar player, dad. Content Marketing and Publication Manager at