Visiting J&R’s Vintage Auto Museum

by | Feb 3, 2014

Today’s Post by Joe Farace

If you like to see beautifully restored antique and classic automobiles and find yourself in the Albuquerque area be sure to stop by J&R Vintage Autos. In 1995 Gab and Evonna Joiner decided to construct a building to display their cars. It started out as just a place to display the cars and has since grown into a museum displaying approximately 70 vehicles, along with auto-related memorabilia. Including mementos from Joiner’s participation in The Great Race.

Oh yeah, the Joiners drive these cars and they even drove an antique Marmon on one of the cross country classic car rallies. In 1988 Evonna and her friend Melba Anderson entered a 1931 Ford Cabriolet and drove from Disneyland to Boston, becoming the first all-female team to finish The Great Race. That car is on display as is all of the other cars the Joiners have entered in the event including everything from a Marmon (there are other Marmons on display) to an antique Packard. These cars like the rest of the cars in the museum are both lovingly restored and displayed.

The cars here range from a 1912 Buick to a 1969 Mercury Cougar that was their daughter Melvonna’s first car when she was a sophomore in high school. There is even a rare De Vaux here. Everything in the museum is sparkling clean—even the floors. There are no rusty, dusty relics here, all of the cars are beautiful to look at but may be a challenge to photograph since they are parked close together. But don’t worry about making pictures—you can shoot some great details—just soak up the environment and enjoy looking at some amazing automobiles. There are even some cars for sale or trade, so ask or you can check the website for details

J&R Vintage Autos also has a bookstore with mostly motor-related books, die-cast toys, and porcelain signs. Gab also has a large restoration shop where you can often find him tinkering with his cars. It was raining when I was there and after touring the museum, poked my nose into the shop and Gab invited me in for a chat. There were six cars in various stages of restoration, the newest being a beautiful 1953 Chevrolet convertible and the oldest being an antique Ford (Gab likes Fords) but there was also a Mack pick-up truck undergoing restoration.

IMPORTANT UPDATE: It is with great sorrow that we announce the road for J&R Vintage Auto Museum has come to an end. After more than 25 years of memories we will be closing our doors on March 30, 2019.


If you enjoyed today’s blog post and would like to treat Joe to a cup of Earl Grey tea ($2.50), click here.

Along with photographer Barry Staver, Joe is co-author of Better Available Light Digital Photograph that’s available from Amazon for $21.50 with used copies starting around six bucks. For some reason, the Kindle price can be really high, not Barry or me.