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October 24, 2022 Press Release: Barry Silver Films Acquires “Model T Girls” Book For Feature Adaption

March 22, 2022 – Story of the Gyspy Coeds and the Silver Streak is featured in PBS Documentary “Route 66 Women: The Untold Story Of The Mother Road”

A recently completed documentary, “Route 66 Women: The Untold Story Of The Mother Road” is becoming available on PBS. We began working with the group that ultimately created this documentary in 2017, attending “Women of The Mother Road” events in St. Louis and Springfield Missouri with the Silver Streak in tow. Now, 5 years later the 3 episode documentary has been completed and has been picked up by several PBS stations this month, which is of course Women’s History Month. The story of the Gypsy Coeds and the Silver Streak is part of episode one. It’s neat to be a part of this larger project. PBS (Public Broadcasting Service) distributes programming to approximately 350 locally controlled and operated public television stations across the country, so not all stations have picked it up yet. Please call your local station and ask if it is currently part of their programming and if not, ask them to pick it up from APT (American Public Television) syndication.

July 16, 2021- Road & Track Magazine Article about the Silver Streak and the Bradford Model T Girls

July 5, 2021 – Repost of an October 2015 Post

The attached song was written and sung by our son Alex John Butte to coincide with the launch of the book, Darlene’s Silver Streak and The Bradford Model T Girls in October 2015. Much of it was shot at the Wheels O’Time Museum. Great tune. Enjoy

July 5, 2021 – Story of Silver Streak and Bradford Model T Girls in Road & Track, on newsstands tomorrow, July 6

June 29, 2021 – Silver Streak on loan to Wheels O’Time Museum for month of July, 2021

We delivered the Silver Streak to the Wheels O’Time Museum on the North side of Peoria, Illinois today. The Silver Streak will be on display at the museum for the month of July. The museum is open Wednesday thru Sunday, 12:00 – 5:00pm.


October 28, 2020-Wall Street Journal Columnist AJ Baime Publishes Story about the Silver Streak and the Bradford Model T Girls

WSJ Oct 28, 2020

September 25, 2019- Play written based on the book “Darlene’s Silver Streak and The Bradford Model T Girls”

Jennie Johnson, playwright from Denver Colorado has written a play based on the book Darlene’s Silver Streak and The Bradford Model T Girls.  The play is titled The Adventures of the Model T Girls.  Jennie is in the process of scheduling a premier for the play in the Denver metropolitan area sometime in 2020.

In support of the Sesquicentennial of Bradford, Illinois, home of the Model T Girls…aka the Gypsy Coeds, Jennie agreed to come to Bradford and conduct a “staged reading” of the play  on Friday evening August 30 in the form of a dinner theater at Shallowbrook Retreat and Conference Center in Bradford, and on Saturday August 31 in the Junior High Gymnasium.  It was the first public reading of the script.  Several of the volunteer cast members were related to the Bradford Model T Girls, including 6 of our grandchildren, 5 reading as Gypsy Coeds and one as the sound manager.  One of the Gypsy Coeds was present in the audience, Winnie Swearingen Hays, 101 and the only surviving Gypsy Coed.


This was not the first time Jennie had come to Bradford.  She attended the Labor Day festivities in 2018 as part of her preparation for writing the play.

More information about the Denver Premier will be posted here as the dates are finalized.

July 29, 2019, “Silver Streak and Gypsy Coeds” Story part of exhibit at the Gilmore Car Museum

The Gilmore Car Museum, North America’s largest auto museum, located near Kalamazoo, MI will honor many women considered pioneers in auto travel, motor sports and automobile design in a special exhibit, Women Who Motor, which opens July 19 2019 and runs thru July 14, 2020.   The Gypsy Coeds of Bradford, Illinois will be included in this tribute along with Alice Ramsey, Joan Newton Cuneo, Helene Rother, Audrey Moore, The Damsels of Design, Betty Skelton, Lyn St. James, Shirley Muldowney, and Danica Patrick.”  The car driven by the Gypsy Coeds, a 1926 Model T Ford touring car that the girls nicknamed “Silver Streak” will be included in the special exhibit.  The Silver Streak has never been restored and looks very much like it did after the last trip in 1942, including the graffiti, “Lizzie Labels” that adorn its exterior.

For 9 consecutive summers, beginning in 1934, Darlene Dorgan, the small town beautician invited friends to take summer vacations with her in her 1926 Ford Model T.  Such travel by young single women was not common, particularly in the early years.  They crisscrossed the nation, traveling coast to coast with visits to Canada and Mexico traveling an estimated 71,000 miles in total.  By night, they slept in country schoolyards and even jails while by day they hobnobbed with the rich and famous, including Henry Ford, who met with the girls twice in Dearborn. Henry became a patron of their travels, providing the girls with tickets to Worlds Fairs in New York and San Francisco, sending them travel maps and in 1941 even paid for the overhaul of the Silver Streak’s engine when the girls were stranded in San Francisco.

The book, Darlene’s Silver Streak and The Bradford Model T Girls, recounts those adventurous vacation years and is on sale in the Gilmore Gift Shop.  The book is written by John Butte, who is the son of one of the Gypsy Coeds.  John actually tracked the Silver Streak down in Portland Oregon, still owned by a descendant of Darlene Dorgan and was able to purchase the car and return it to its roots in Central Illinois in 2012. Much of the information for the book was found in diaries, letters, newspaper articles, interviews with living Gypsy Coeds and the archives of  The Henry Ford Museum.  The book is also available at & Barnes &, as well as the Bradford Public Library.

To learn more about the “Women Who Motor” and the Gilmore Car Museum near Kalamazoo, MI , visit  For more information about the Gypsy Coeds and the Silver Streak, visit

January 13, 2019: Silver Streak and Gypsy Coed story will be part of Gilmore Museum Winter Lecture Series on February 3, 2019

Honored to have the chance to be part of the Gilmore Automotive Museum Winter Lecture Series at Hickory Corners, Michigan. The Silver Streak and the Gypsy Coeds are the lecture on February 3, followed by a book signing, “Darlene’s Silver Streak and The Bradford Model T Girls”. Should be a fun time.


screen shot 2019-01-13 at 7.48.17 pmscreen shot 2018-12-20 at 7.17.11 pmfebruary 3 lectureModelTGirls_front-cover