Model Citizen

Discussion in 'OFF-Topic / Misc.' started by javlin, Aug 26, 2009.

  1. javlin

    javlin Well-Known Member

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    A little bit of or local flavor.I have heard of this guy over the years but here recently he has opened a museum of sorts,I might have to poke my head in.And Wayne and Wojek thought they had a stash hahahaha:shock:

    For 94-year-old T.F. Monti, his private collection of more than 4,000 plastic model aircraft, automobiles, marine vessels and military vehicles is an accidental hobby that began in the late 1950s.

    My son Tom was 12 years old at the time and won a contest at Kern s Dime Store in Bay St. Louis on Main Street, Monti said. The prize was a plastic model of the USS Missouri battleship.

    My dad helped my brother (Tom) build it and that s when he got the bug, said Joe Monti.

    As of December 2004, Monti s collection included 1,528 aircraft, 970 automobiles, 963 military vehicles, 114 rockets and missiles, 324 ships and boats and 96 miscellaneous models. He has since built more.

    The retired Coast Electric engineer actually started his craft in the late 1930s with wooden models he built from apple crates, boxes and balsa wood. Upon graduation from St. Stanislaus College in 1934, Monti worked at Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans. When returning to his Bay St. Louis home after work around 8:30 p.m., Monti for relaxation would build models.

    My wife said my job was to dust them every two weeks, he said. I gave many of the wooden models away and I lost some in Katrina. I have two or three left.

    Even though Monti lost some plastic and wooden models in the storm, his bountiful collection can be viewed at his workshop exhibit, War and Peace The T.F. Monti Private Model Collection, which opened six months ago. Located off of U.S. 90 behind Monti Electric in Waveland, visitors can either stop by on weekday afternoons from 1-3 p.m. or schedule an appointment.

    Using an X-Acto knife, a few paintbrushes and applying his artistic workmanship, Monti creates miniature masterpieces of some of the world s greatest machines.

    From room to room and shelf to shelf, models are categorized by their classification. The first viewing room contains about 1,000 automobiles, everything from roadsters to classic cars and vehicles from the 1800s to a French fire truck from 1911.

    Some automobiles date back to the early 1900s all the way to present-day cars, Monti said. We have sport cars, pick-up trucks, woodies, wagons and even fire engines.

    Another room houses all types of marine vessels from a variety of nations including the USS Enterprise, the world s largest and first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, John F. Kennedy s Patrol Torpedo (PT) 109 boat and a replica of the USS Maine, which exploded in Havana, Cuba, during the Spanish-American War.

    Monti even has models of old carracks like Christopher Columbus Santa Maria.

    Out of all the ships, the Santa Maria took the longest, he said. But the ships are the hardest to build.

    His son Joe firmly agreed.

    I would start them, but I would get frustrated and put it back in the box, he said.

    Monti s military collection features models such as U.S. armored vehicles, Civil War cannons, Israeli, German and United Nations tanks, an M-18 Howitzer, a TM-76 Mace and U.S. soldier figurines that he said are extremely tedious. I use my wife s tweezers for every detail, Monti said.

    But the most impressive room is the aircraft exhibit, with models that range from a scaled-down version of the Hindenburg to gliders used in Normandy and Howard Hughes Spruce Goose.

    If you want to fly a helicopter, we have some helicopters, Monti said as he pointed to one of his first-made models, the U.S. Navy dual-engine helicopter.

    You would be surprised by the old pilots from World War II who come here and tell us about the aircraft they flew, he said.

    There is a lot of history here and my main ambition is to have this museum for kids and people to enjoy and appreciate because that s what it s here for, Monti said. And when they come, I want them to sometimes think of me.



    http://nl.newsbank.com/nl-search/we/Archives?p_action=doc&p_docid=12A4A9DDFB1FF898&p_docnum=1
     
  2. Heinz

    Heinz Active Member

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    Wow :shock:

    thanks for the article man!
     
  3. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    :shock: Thanks for sharing mate!
     
  4. Wayne Little

    Wayne Little Well-Known Member

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    :shock: ..I'm not that far gone....:D
     
  5. Heinz

    Heinz Active Member

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    Close though....:lol:
     
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