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The First Mustang Ever Sold

first-mustangIn 1964 a young 22 year old woman had just graduated college in Chicago and landed her first career position as a third grade teacher.  To reward herself for her accomplishments, Gail Wise headed down to her local Chicago Ford dealer to purchase a new convertible.  Upon arrival to the Johnson Ford dealership down on Cicero Ave., Gail was disappointed to find not one single convertible on the lot.

Not wanting Gail to leave the dealership disappointed, the sales person took her into the back of the dealership and unveiled the new Skylight Blue Mustang convertible.    It was love at first site and Gail, with the help of her parents, bought the car on site.

Unknowing to the sales person, the Mustang was due to be unveiled at the New York World’s fair in 2 days on April 17th.  Seeing that it was only the 15th, the car was technically not supposed to be for sale.  Nonetheless, the sale was finalized on the 15th and Gail was in her glory.  The Mustang sold for $3,400 at the time which is hard to believe!  However, that was pretty steep for those days… Gail’s first teaching job only paid $5,100 per year.

The following weeks Gail was enjoying her new ride and the attention that came along with it.  She says “Everyone stopped, stared and waved. I felt like a movie star. At school, all the school boys ran out to the parking lot and hovered over the car.”  Gail’s friends added “I remember police pulling us over.  Not so they could give us a ticket, but so they could get a better look at the car.”

Eventually the novelty of the car faded as more and more Mustangs filled the streets and her 1964 convertible became a daily driver for her and her husband Tom.  The car served her purpose as the family car until 1979 when issues with the carburetor linkage forced them to get a newer vehicle.

The first Ford Mustang ever sold has never left their possession.  Gail almost sold the car, but Tom convinced her to keep this prized possession.  He went as far as adding another stall to their garage just for the Mustang.  In 2006 the car finally got a full restoration to bring it back to its original showroom condition.  Once again Gail is able to recreate that feeling she had driving off the dealership on April 15th, 1964.

Here is a great video interview of Tom and Gail Wise provided by Hagerty Insurance.  They tell in their own words what this car means to them and provide a few pictures of the restoration process as well.