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Classic Jukeboxes Made in Grand Rapids are for Sale

Last August I did a blog post about my visit to the private Rowe/AMI Jukebox museum, in Grand Rapids, Mich., back in 1999. On one of the upper floors of their building, they had an area where they had kept one of just about every model manufactured here in West Michigan. Walking into that room and seeing all those classic jukeboxes lit up was like Dorothy seeing Oz for the first time! I received word last week that these classic jukeboxes are for sale.

Rowe/AMI manufacturing operations moved out of Grand Rapids in August 2009. (Here is my blog post on the whereabouts of the very last jukebox made in Grand Rapids). Last summer the company was sold to an out-of-state investment firm. At the time I was not sure of the whereabouts of all of those classic jukeboxes. I had several people tell me they had been crated up and shipped away, but no one really knew where they went.

Last week Kenny Lindsay messaged me through Facebook to let me know that his American Eagle Auction and Appraisal Company would be selling off the Rowe/AMI Museum jukeboxes this coming weekend in Ann Arbor.

This news saddened me because I had hoped that maybe someday the public would be able to see all of these machines in an big room like I did…a memory I will never forget. Now, however, it looks like these jukeboxes will be sold off individually to interested buyers. This is great news for collectors though! Here is your chance to get a piece of history — a classic jukebox made in Grand Rapids, Mich. (And most of these jukeboxes are in mint condition!)

Oh how I wish I had won the lottery! I would buy all of these jukeboxes and start my own museum!

On the American Eagle website are pictures of the jukeboxes that are up for auction this week. Absentee bidding started on Tuesday, February 20th. The live auction will be on Saturday, February, 24th from 10 am to 5 pm at the Washtenaw Farm Council Fairgrounds, 5055 Ann Arbor-Saline Rd., Ann Arbor, MI. You can click on the links to see pictures of the classic jukeboxes that will be up for auction.

And yes, that might be a tear welling up in my eye.

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