Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

My Favorite Car: '41 Graham Hollywood (customized), Jim Dence, 51, Seminole

'41 Graham Hollywood (customized)

Several years ago, I came across this very strange vehicle sitting along the road with a "For Sale" sign on it. The car looked rather sad. It was completely gutted out and had been in the back of an old body shop in Seminole for some 30 years. The car was a 1941 Graham Hollywood. They were only built as four-door sedans. When I spoke with the owner about the car, she informed me that her husband bought the car in the late '40s and wanted to customize it. Well that he did. The windshield came from a 1940s Chris Craft boat. Taillights from a 1949 Lincoln. The trunk was originally the roof of a 1951 Buick, and the list goes on. I just had to have this car. My friend and I spent the next several months bringing it back from the dead. For three years, I drove around town with it in gray primer. Then I approached my friend about restoring it. Six months later, the car was done. I even had flame throwers put on the exhaust. I would pull out the choke cable and dump raw gas down the exhaust pipes and ignite the fuel with spark plugs attached on the exhaust tips and a Model T coil. What fun during the winter months throwing 6 feet of flame out the back of the car to keep the car show spectators warm. I held onto her for eight years, then traded her for another toy. I miss those days at the car shows, but I look back and remember the smiles that people had when they would pass by. That's what it's all about anyway. Love those old cars!

You say you had cool wheels yourself?

Whether it was your first or your favorite — or both — we'd like to hear your story.

All we need is an email telling us:

About the car: the make, model and year and a short description of why you love it.

About you: your name, address and date of birth.

Then, attach a high-resolution photo or scanned image of the car to the email and send it to drive@tampa

My Favorite Car: '41 Graham Hollywood (customized), Jim Dence, 51, Seminole 11/27/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, November 27, 2012 3:30am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Manahattan Casino choice causes political headache for Kriseman


    ST. PETERSBURG — Days before the mayoral primary, Mayor Rick Kriseman's decision to let a Floribbean restaurant open in Midtown's historic Manhattan Casino has caused political angst within the voting bloc he can least afford to lose: the black community.

    Last week Mayor Rick Kriseman chose a Floribbean restaurant concept to fill Midtown's historic Manhattan Casino. But that decision, made days before next week's mayoral primary, has turned into a political headache for the mayor. Many residents want to see the building's next tenant better reflect its cultural significance in the black community. [JAMES BORCHUCK   |   Times]
  2. Bucs talk social issues, protests at team meeting


    TAMPA — Each time Dirk Koetter walks through the door of his office at One Buc Place, he passes by the only jersey framed on his wall.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans (13) wears custom cleats to represent Ross Initiative in Sports for Equality (RISE) as part of the NFL???‚??„?s "My Cause, My Cleats Campaign" before the start of a football game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, Calif., on Sunday, Dec. 4, 2016.
  3. UPS relocates express operations from St. Pete-Clearwater to TIA


    TAMPA — United Parcel Service Inc. is switching airports for its express air operations. Beginning in October, UPS will relocate from St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport to Tampa International Airport.

    Beginning in October, UPS will move from St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport to Tampa International Airport. [Associated Press file photo]

  4. St. Petersburg man shot in arm during home invasion robbery


    ST. PETERSBURG — One man was arrested on charges he shot another man in the arm while attempting to rob a home in what St. Petersburg police are calling a drug-related incident.

    John Alam, 25, faces charges of home invasion robbery, aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and possession of a firearm by a felon after deputies said he tried to rob a home Wednesday morning and ended up shooting someone. [Courtesy of Pinellas County Sheriff's Office]
  5. Bob Buckhorn, a mayor who knows what he wants, surveys constituents on what they want


    TAMPA — Focus has not been a problem — or really, even a question — during the six-plus years that Mayor Bob Buckhorn has been in office.

    Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn keeps a digital countdown clock in his office showing the days, hours. minutes and seconds until he is term-limited out of office on April 1, 2019. As of Wednesday, he had 584 days to go. [City of Tampa]