The Beatles, the FBI, JFK, and a ’63 VW Kombi Bus | Hagerty Classic of the Year

The Beatles, the FBI, JFK, and a ’63 VW Kombi Bus | Hagerty Classic of the Year


(upbeat music) – Once I knew the real
story behind this van I was like whoa. (pictures snapping)
(upbeat music) I need to find everything I can and now it’s just like
this is meant to be. There’s no question that I was supposed to end up with this van. (upbeat music) This is actually called
a Volkswagen Kombi van and the Kombi vans were
primarily in Europe used for delivery. And this is an unusual van because it’s a double barn door van. Both these two doors open up, but there’s a second set on
the other side of the car and that is extremely rare. I’m flipping through, looking for cars and I come across this van. I was like, “Oh wow, this is cool.” And so, I’m reading the story. The only story that’s being
told by this gentlemen is this van was sued
by the U.S. government, and this is the title of the cake. Well, this is interesting, but I still don’t get the full story. The original owner of this
bus was Thomas Michael Post. His grandfather was a
brother of C.W. Post. Thomas decided to come to Washington, D.C. because of the Kennedy family, and he was excited. He wanted to become a part of what was happening in Washington. And he drove it across the country, and he decided that he would
stop at the National Parks that were on his way to Washington, D.C. He started as a janitor, and as he emptied the trash he kind of opened up the pieces of paper that were either tossed
or crumbled and tossed and he saw signatures, including signatures by President Kennedy, signatures by his brother. Thomas thought these
signatures and these documents these have values, and
not monetary values, but historical value. He became the self appointed
independent library. This van was the library of congress. Thomas had his van parked at
a store in Washington, D.C. A woman saw the van
and left Thomas a note. And when Thomas got into the car he saw the note and he called the woman. And she said, “Can I hire
you to transport my clients to and from a hotel to an event?” Thomas went to the hotel
and he waited outside. And there was a group of people out there, and there was a limo. And he didn’t think anything of it. And Thomas is just kind of
sitting there, you know, in the driver’s seat. (muffled radio) And then he saw some other group of people coming out of the hotel
with umbrellas over them. And the van door opens up. And the four guys came in, said, “Hello”, asked for drinks. And it was The Beatles. Thomas drove them to
the very first concert, which was in Washington, D.C.
at some type of ice rink. That means that The
Beatles sat on these seats. Karmic energy is in this van. (upbeat music) And that’s how Thomas met The Beatles and became a friend of George Harrison. Quite a few years later
he received notification from George Harrison saying, “Hey, I’m doing a concert for
the benefit of Bangladesh. I’ve got some ticket
for you at (mumbles).” So, Thomas took his van in and left it at a mechanic’s in D.C. and decided to take a bus to
New York to go to the concert. It’s believed he never
made it to the concert because no one came
back to pick up the van. At the mechanic’s the mechanic
went to prepare to lean it. He then had one of his helpers take out any personal items, and as the gentlemen went through the bus he opened up these doors. Here’s one of them. And what was inside was stacked boxes, and it had all trash from U.S. congress of any type of communication
with signatures, like John F. Kennedy, his brother, and whoever else had documents. The mechanic contacted the FBI. They came and took the van, confiscated all the material. Nobody looked for Thomas. It is probably the only van, or only Volkswagen van that’s been sued by the United States Government. And it is a natural legal case on record. You know, there’s more than
just a piece of metal here with an engine. And it’s the cultural dynamics that have occurred with this van. This van opened up that door. To do the research it’s
almost like opening up a new envelope every
time I find something, or it’s a new color of a balloon that you’re just reaching
for this other information. Where else is this gonna take me?

About the Author: Michael Flood

61 Comments

  1. I had a 1957 Type 2 cargo with double barn doors in factory yellow. Just wish I could have afforded the restoration. 🙁

  2. DID Anybody else ever read the story of D.R.Davenport & a micro-bus named URGE from "The Last Whole Earth Catalog"?
    That would PROVE You were THERE ✌❣

  3. I would like to see more information regarding the Beatles in the van. I just don't see them randomly hiring somebody in a van to transport The Fab Four. Brian Epstein was more detail oriented than that. Perhaps I'm wrong, but I would like to see a picture. I know that there is only a few minutes to tell the story and I look forward to more details.

  4. To add to your story… Marjory Merriweather Post lived in DC in her Hillwood Mansion. The Beatles Concert arena was called Uline Arena which is undergoing an adaptive reuse and preservation as I write this.

  5. Another great story, but what happened to Tom Post? Disappear and never resurface? Pass away on his way to the concert?

  6. Hagerty needs some fact checkers. Most of this story has been debunked years ago. The story gets wilder with every sale.

  7. She lost me at the Beatles… I like to hear how she found out they were in the van…with no Thomas to be found? Someone not being very honest.

  8. Interesting story. I'm not trying to nitpick, but it is not a van. It is a bus. It is in fact a 1963 Double Door Panel. The doors are not barndoors they are cargo doors. A barndoor is any bus manufactured before the end of February 1955. I guess I am nitpicking a little. Nice bus and good story nonetheless.

  9. I love the history of classic cars. I traced my 1964 Thunderbird back to it's original owner, dealership, and the garage it was kept in by the original owner when new.

  10. It's funny to see how many VW owners throw modern surfboards on top of their vintage vehicles just for looks…but they keep everything else period correct…LOL

  11. It's cool owning vehicles with history. Just sold a '94 Accord wagon that some cool racing history a couple years ago. I'll probably regret that.

  12. This is not a Kombi. It's a panel Van , VW Bus. The little windows were added later. You can tell from the vents by the roof line.

  13. WOW WHAT A VERY KOOL STORY
    AND WITH SUM AWESOME HISTORY
    BEHIND IT AZ WELL 👏🏼 …….
    ( KNUCKLE👊🏽BUMP ) Hagerty …..

  14. Sounds like a story for a potentially good movie. Someone who have to try and solve the mystery of what happened to Thomas though….

  15. Cool and not "barndoors". See OMara Eric comment below. "Barndoor" busses ended Feb 1955. Definitely on the rare side though with dbl doors, both sides. Looks great and drives. I had to post so my bus avatar would be here too.

  16. 63' was about civil rights, not about chaps from Liverpool who stole the motown sound.the beatles did not stand up for the rights of all people. That makes them losers. Take that.

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