This is a story about a man and his Rolls Royce…more specifically, his love for the car. Allen Swift’s father gave him a 1928 Rolls Royce Piccadilly P1 roadster as a graduation gift (in 1928). Swift loved the car so much that he drove it for 78 years! He is credited with owning the same Rolls Royce longer than anyone else in the world.
Swift with his prized possession, a 1928 Rolls Royce Piccadilly P1 roadster. The car was given to him brand-new by his father as a graduation gift, and Swift drove it until his death in 2005!
Swift passed on in 2005 at the age of 102, but before he went, he went to great measure to ensure the preservation of his beloved Rolls. Swift forked over a cool $1 million dollars to the Lyman & Merrie Wood Museum of Springfield History to create a new exhibition intended to preserve the roadster. Swift was from Springfield, a town with a Rolls Royce history. From 1920-1931, nearly 3,000 vehicles were built there.
The Springfield museum display
The Piccadilly Rolls is now prominently displayed in the Transportation Collection, where it tells the story of Rolls-Royce manufacturing in the Massachusetts town. This is a good idea, seeing as how it as so long ago, it is unlikely that many Springfield residents remember or are aware of the history there.
Today, Swift’s cherished Piccadilly P1 Roadster is prominently displayed in the museum’s Transportation Collection
Rolls Royce took notice of Swift in 1994, bestowing him with a crystal Spirit of Ecstasy award for duration of ownership. By the time of his death in 2005, he had logged over 170,000 miles on the classic Rolls Royce!
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