For 50 years, its whereabouts has been a mystery, writes Christopher Baker, but the mystery may be solved. Hemingway’s 1955 Chrysler seems to have appeared.
Somehow, Baker writes, the Chrysler New Yorker DeLuxe ended up in the hands of Hemingway’s driver, and then, mysteriously, into the hands of the government, which has moved the car to the Finca.
“While no direct link exists to Hemingway,” he writes on the website for the excellent Moon travel guides, “the car in question was produced in the correct two-tone red color code and assigned from the factory to Comiac Havana, presumably the Imperial Automobile Company, the sole Chrysler dealer.”
The plot thickens.
Baker knows a thing or two about cars and Cuba. He’s the author of the coffee table book Cuba Classics: A Celebration of Vintage American Automobiles.
Positive identification of this car as Hemingway’s seems critical to what might hopefully develop into a Cuban-American effort to properly restore the vehicle and reinstall it at its Cuban home. (A precedent was set when the Finca Vigía Foundation brought Cuban and U.S. conservationists together to restore Finca Vigía and save its moldy archives for future generations.)
The hunt is on for paperwork (importer records, sales receipts, titles, registrations, licensing, service or maintenance records) with a firm ID match to the car at Finca Vigía.
The biennial 13th International Hemingway Colloquium will be held at Finca Vigía this June. A perfect venue for a possible official announcement, which I await with eager anticipation.