‘American Pickers’: Looking Back at the Time Mike Wolfe and Frank Fritz Found Aerosmith’s Van

by Megan Molseed
american-pickers-looking-back-time-mike-wolfe-frank-fritz-found-aerosmith-van

For over a decade the “American Pickers” have been touring the country looking for rare antiques and strange finds. In each episode of the hit History Channel show, hosts Mike Wolfe and Frank Fritz would climb into their vehicle, and off they went. Scouring the countryside to dig and find what they could.

In one episode of “American Pickers,” Wolfe and Fritz found themselves rolling like rock stars when they made an especially unique find when they were called to check out a recently discovered vehicle on a Massachusetts property.

The 1964 International Harvester Metro van was discovered in the woods in Chesterfield Massachusetts in 2005. Phil, the property owner who discovered the van was certain there was a connection to the group. However, whether it belonged to groupies or the band itself was something he was unsure of. To help him solve the mystery, Phil called upon the experts: the “American Pickers.”

“American Pickers” Solve An “Aerosmith” Mystery

The hosts, who have a keen eye for this sort of thing, noticed a few very unique, and very distinct features on the vehicle. Features that would suggest they had uncovered a piece of rock and roll history

According to an article on the History Channel’s website, Mike Wolfe and Frank Fritz noted a cartoon character that decorated the side of the van. The van also featured the word “Aerosmith” written in big letters on the exterior.

There were a couple of additional facts related to the find that intrigued the hosts to dig further. First, the Harvester Metro model was produced from the late 1930s through the late 1970s. This timeline fits when the group would be using such a van for travel while touring. Additionally, the group originated in Boston, Massachusetts. Near where Phil had discovered the vehicle.

“If they used this van when they first started rocking, it would have been old enough where they could acquire it pretty cheap,” Wolfe said as he was first investigating the vehicle.

It turns out, the hunch was correct. Not only did the unique relic once belong to Aerosmith, but it was also an important piece of the band’s early days touring and performing in the 1970s.

A Real Rock ‘n’ Roll Find!

Former Aerosmith guitarist and longtime member of the band’s entourage, Ray Tabano confirmed the ‘American Pickers” hunch.

“I’m afraid to say how long it is, but it’s like 40 years since we’ve been in this thing,” Tabano said when he saw the van.

“I just flashback to when we first started the band,” the founding member added. “Here’s this thing that you know, we lived in. It was like our dressing room, you know, it was like a rolling hotel.”

To further prove the vehicle’s authenticity, Ray Tanano shared photos of the band in the newly-discovered van.

Despite its incredible history, the owner was still willing to part with the find. For a price.

“We just got a piece of American rock ‘n” roll history!” the host exclaimed after purchasing the van for a cool $25,000.

Outsider.com