A virtual magazine for a true passion!

Editor: Jaap Horst


Volume 13, Issue 5

Malmerspach Collection

Ard op de Weegh

16 Mai 2008, in the evening, died Madame Arlette Schlumpf –Naas; the widow of Mr. Fritz Schlumpf at the age of 76 years. This brave woman had her great years beside her husband till 1977 and in the years after that she fought with her husband against the injustice that has been done to them by the French government, the French court of justice, the Trade Union, the press and the misled public opinion. It was an intrigue against them of jealousy, injustice, instigating people and the bankrupt of the factories of Schlumpf in 1977 came for the politic and the socialists as a gift from heaven to prove that the capitalists were to blame for the bad economic situation. They forgot to mention, that the problems in the textile industry were caused by the much cheaper textile out of Asia. All over Europe textile factories had to close.

What after that happened to the Schlumpfs was scandalous. It’s my opinion, that the French government, the French court, the city of Mulhouse, the writing press of that time and the trade union are due to a serious apologize to Arlette and Fritz Schlumpf. In 1977 and the roaring years after that many private properties of the Schlumpfs were taken away from them. Among them the entire car collection.

At the 18th of April 1992 Fritz Schlumpf died disappointed at the age of 86. Arlette kept fighting for the rehabilitation of her husband and her daughter. In 1999 she got back as a gesture of the French government a very small part of the entire car collection of Fritz, the so called Malmerspach collection; 62 cars that were not restored yet in 1977 when the French government confiscated them. As Arlette regained these 62 cars – among them 17 Bugattis – they were in a bad shape. Many parts of the cars were stolen, even a complete car: the Alfa Romeo Cabriolet décapotable. Arlette sheltered the cars in a big shed in Wertolsheim and they stayed there until six weeks after she died. Before her dead she spoke to two automotive salesmen; the Dutchman Jaap Braam Ruben and the Frenchman Bruno Vendiesse. They could buy the cars if they promised that the best part of the collection would stay together. Jaap and Bruno kept word. Five weeks after the dead of Mrs. Schlumpf they removed the cars from Wertolsheim to a little village in the neighbourhood of Lille. From 12 Bugattis are waiting to be shipped to the US. One will be restored in Peable Beach condition, the others will be shown in the museum of Peter Mullin in Oxnard in California.

On Monday the 28th of July I was allowed by Jaap en Bruno to see the collection together with my son. It was a kind of emotional to me to see this collection. Arlette fought as a lion to get these cars back. There were even eight Bugattis that Fritz Schlumpf bought from William Shakespeare in 1964. These cars – except some T57 Gallibier - will return to America after 44 years.

Most of the cars were still in a pretty good shape, although there was nothing done with them since 1964 if you don’t mention the thieves in the 22 years the French government guarded them. At first I walked around between the cars, overwhelmed by the mystic. I considered the history of these cars as a symbol of the brave fight of one little woman against the state. It had not been because of these cars, but it was about the rehabilitation of her husband Fritz. I felt deep respect for Arlette. Then I was struck by the mystic and the charisma of these unrestored cars. Real beauty lasts for ever in what state cars are. It’s in the character. So this collection is one big monument for Fritz Schlumpf but surely for Arlette, too.

I am very happy, that we saw the cars unrestored before their shipping to America. In this condition the cars were during the time, that Arlette fought for them. Arlette is no more, but the story of the Schlumpfs hasn’t ended yet. We will write a book about the affaire, tell the truth, demask the intrigues and lies and rehabilitate Hans an Fritz Schlumpf. But for all we will give the respect to that woman who earns that. Arlette Schlumpf. The battle has begun.

Future of this collection:

Some of the Galibiers will be sold in Europe. Braam-Ruben and Vendiesse will each keep a Stelvio. All other Bugattis will go, together with several other interesting cars to the museum of Peter Mullin in Oxnard, California.
The cars will be exhibited there UNRESTORED! The vehicles will be displayed exactly as they were. One day the whole collection may be sent to a cleaning service for a full restoration, but at the moment only the Delago D8 and the Peugot will undergo a restoration.

Cars in the collection, The numbers are from the 1977 police report:

Number	Marque			Chassis number
001 	Sizaire 		Chassis # 776 
002 	Cottin Desgouttes 	# 50102 
003 	Delage Convertible 	??? 
004 	Minerva (chassis)
005 	Steyr Sport Type 7 	Production # 2992 
006	Delage CO (chassis) 	Chassis # 7216 
007  	Bugatti (body only) 	??? 
008 	Peugeot Darl Mat 	Chassis # 705330 
009 	"char a banc a moteur a 4 sieges"
010	Mercedes ("voiture incendie rouge")
011	Lorraine Dietrich Fire Engine 
012	Austro Daimler ("voiture incendie rouge")
013 	Laffly ("voiture citerne") # 116416
014 	Peugeot Ambulance 
015 	Delage CO2 Fire Engine 	Chassis # 12892 
016	??? (voiture incendie, auto-pompo") # 42004
017 	Bugatti Type 57 	Chassis # 57224 
018 	Delahaye Chassis 	# 22537 
019 	Cord 810 Westchester Sedan  
020 	Veritas 		Engine #3260110000 
021 	Panhard X63 		Chassis # 70850 
022 	Ford Montier ??? 
023 	1937 Cord 812 Beverly Sedan Supercharger 
				Chassis #32122S
024  	Maybach (chassis) 	Chassis # 1356
025 	Talbot T15 Lago Baby 	Chassis # 121587 
026  	Fiat 2800 		Chassis # 2800 0000 12
027  	Delage D6 		Chassis # 880100 
028 	Georges Irat 		Chassis # 2515 
029 	Bucciali 
030 	De Dion Bouton 		Chassis # 11223 
031 	Stolen before 1999! Alfa Romeo
				Engine # 823106 
032	Delage D8 S Convertible Chassis # 36025
033 	Wanderer W25 		Chassis # 180223 
034	Bugatti Type 40 Hunt Break 
				Chassis # 40485 
035	Bugatti Type 57 	Chassis # 57338 
036	Bugatti Type 57 	Chassis # 57168 
037 	Bugatti Type 57 Stelvio Chassis # 57327	(Bruno Vendiesse)
038	Bugatti Type 57 Ventoux Chassis # 57297 
039	Bugatti Type 57Galibier Chassis # 57535 
040 	Bugatti Type 57 Stelvio Chassis # 57507 
041 	Bugatti Type 57		Chassis # 57377 
042 	Bugatti Type 57 	Chassis # 57540 
043 	Bugatti Type 57 	Chassis # 57728 
044 	Bugatti Type 44	 	Chassis # 441322 
045 	Bugatti Type 40A 	Chassis # 40902 
046	Bugatti Type 40 	Chassis # 40730 
047 	Bugatti Type 40 	Chassis # 40436 
048	Darmont Morgan 		Moteur # 50785 
049	Darmont Special 
050	Bedelia Type R02 	Chassis # 958 
051	Bedelia ??? 
052 	Morgan Monoplace 
053 	Triycycle Monoplace 
054 	Motorbike 
055	Lancia Astura 
056	Lancia (chassis) 	Chassis # 27306
057 	Steyr Taxi 
	("conduite interieur,chauffeur")
				Engine #36008 / 12R526
058 	"chassis de wagon" ???
059 	"tracteur sur rails" ???
060 	Steyr Taxi 
061 	??? 
062  	Steyr Taxi 
063 	Camionette (wreck) 
064	Ford Model T 


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