You’ve Probably Never Heard Of This Cincinnati Classic Car Museum

VSars, trucks and things going– it’s not just a beloved children’s classic from Richard Scarry, it’s also pretty much every parent’s mantra in the early years. Because really: kids love cars, trucks and things that walk.

Photograph by Sarah McCosham

Children aren’t the only ones fascinated by transportation. Adults also love cars. But maybe no one more than Ron Miller from Salt Dog Museum.

Located northwest of Cincinnati in beautiful Shandon, Ohio, the Salty Dog Museum is Miller’s tribute to the American automobile – a classic car museum well worth visiting.

The Salty Dog Museum is home to dozens of vintage vehicles dating from 1911 through the 1970s, all restored to pristine, gleaming splendor. Entry to this hidden gem is free; however, it’s open by appointment only, as owner Ron Miller is often busy working at his eponymous body shop next door.

Photograph by Sarah McCosham

The museum is home to dozens of well-known classics, like Model As and Ts. These cars are absolutely stunning to look at, and kids can touch and investigate each one. In a separate showroom you’ll find a range of shiny red vintage fire engines to admire from afar and near. Miller demonstrated a siren using an old-fashioned crank, and even let my kids try, after letting them ride, of course.

Photograph by Sarah McCosham

For children (and adults), is there anything better than a museum where you can touch things? There are not any. Miller knows this, and this grandpa has packed a lot of kid-friendly features into what might be a very un-kid-friendly experience.

If you’re curious, the Salty Dog’s name comes from the eponymous Salt Flat race at Bonneville Speedway in Wendover, Utah, which is known for capturing the most land speed records. A racing driver himself, Ron first visited this course in 2008, and it rekindled his passion for classic cars. He has been restoring vintage vehicles since the 1960s and truly enjoys restoring these automobiles to their original glory, as evidenced by the pristine cars in the Salty Dog showroom. Miller’s enthusiasm for these vehicles is infectious, and during our visit I saw these cars for what they really are: fun, functional, fantastic art.

Photograph by Sarah McCosham

Salt Dog Museum, 4995 Cincinnati Brookville Road, Shandon, (513) 265-8750

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