Skip to main content

Morgan History Info

Only TRUE history counts

Home
About Us
Morgan Three Wheelers
Morgan Four Wheelers
New Generation Morgans
The Morgan Factory
Morgan 100 Years
Competition
Morgan Clubs
Morgan Books and Booklets
Morgan Badges and Regalia
Great Morgan Views
Personalities
Bill Hughes
Brian Watts
Edi Stampfel
Hedwig Rodijns
Jim Nichol
John Merton
John H Sheally II
Kevin Bolon
Melvyn Rutter
Pablo Gonzalez
Philip Houha
Robert Couch
Roderich Schwarz
Ron Gray
Tony McLaughlin
Morgan Agents
Contact Us
FAQ
Privacy Policy
Site Map
Links

Jim Nichol


Jim Nichol behind the wheel of "Marga Morga" in the MOG 36 autocross. Note the license plate!
As a long time USA Morgan-enthusiast
, Jim has appeared at numerous meetings over the years. Yet his interest has never slackened, it rather increased! Apart from running and working on his own Morgans, he is also giving US East Coast agents Larry and Linda Eckler a helping hand. Thus he keeps well in touch with the latest news on the Morgan scene.

Jim is better known as Jim Halfdime (nickel = half a dime and sounds as nichol) in the Morgan community around the globe. He actively participates in different Morgan internet fora.

Let Jim share his own Morgan story:

What raised your interest in Morgans and when was this;

The first look I had at a Morgan was during the summer of 1962.  As a fifteen year old wastrel who whiled away his non-educational hours at the Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome with a school chum, the opportunity arose to drive forty minutes to Lime Rock Park for an SCCA regional race. 


Our transport?  A 1953 Oldsmobile 88 with license tags found on his back road…legal?  We weren’t even old enough for drivers’ licenses, but off we went with a few dollars in our pockets for admission.  We found the WW II army surplus bridge into the infield and motored slowly to the “Climbing Turn” where the E Production morning practice was taking place. 


As the TR 4s, Elva Couriers, and other EP cars sped by, I noticed one which looked out of place, a vintage looking racer that provided the impetus to spend $ .50 for a Haybale, the official program. 


Quickly turning to the list of entrants, I found the mystery car to be a Morgan +4…I was hooked!Murphy and a friend's (Vince Maiello) F 4 with the Experimental Aircraft Assn's. Ford Trimotor.  We had a ride in it!  Low and slow, as flying should be!  ...and all seats are window seats!   

What was the first Morgan you owned?


Through high school and university  I longed for the paycheck that would open the doors of Morganing to me.  That opportunity presented itself in April of 1970 when, thanks to a friend, I found a 1964 +4 4 seater with an owner who needed a quick influx of cash.Two days later I was the proud owner of said Morgan.After forty years and two major rebuilds, Marga Morga sits proudly in the garage ready and waiting to ride anywhere.


Which Morgans have you owned over the years?


Over the years, the +4 was joined in the garage by a number of  motorbikes, including a BMW R75/5,  a Bultaco Metralla Mk 2,  a Ducati 350 Desmo SS, a BSA Lightning, anda Yamaha SR500, while wishing to add a Morgan Three Wheeler.That hope was fulfilled in 1998 when “Murphy,” a 1928 British Anzani powered Morgan Aero was added.  Today the two Moggies proudly share the family garage.

 

What gives you the most pleasure of the Morgan hobby?


Morgans have led me to a number of wonderful friendships as well as the joy in visiting a number of fascinating places throughout the US, Canada, and Europe.My life would be much less enjoyable without these connections,  which have enrichened my life beyond measure.

 

How has your involvement with Morgan developed?    


When I first took possession of the +4, I was unaware of any support, this being decades before the internet simplified networking.  Relying on my own somewhat minimal skills, we soldiered on for a year, the Morgan being my sole means of transport.

MOG 35 in Shepherdstown, West Virginia at the banquet.  Murphy was honored with one of the three spots at the banquet for outstanding Moggies

Then in early 1972 in Road & Track magazine there appeared in the classifieds, a notice of an upcoming Morgan meet to be attended by Peter and Jane Morgan.I immediately registered and waited impatiently for the July 4th weekend. 


As the weekend approached, so did Hurricane Agnes along with torrential rains.MOG 2 in Mt.Pocono was not seriously affected and with a high school buddy, off we went with no idea as to what was to transpire. 


It turned out to be a weekend that formed my focus until this day.  Peter and Jane Morgan were delightful as were the many Morgan owners gathered there. 


A year or two later saw the inception of the ¾ Morgan Group of which I remain a member.  My involvement included a term as president and another as vice president along with the honor of being awarded the club’s highest award, the Harry J. Carter Esprit du vent Award. 


Memberships also include the MCC-DC, Morgan Three Wheeler Club, and the Vintage Sports Car Club of America.

   

What do you consider to be your personal Morgan high point?


In 1999 Murphy, (The 1928 Morgan Aero of which I am proud to be steward) received an invitation to the Pebble Beach Concours d’Excellence as one of a ten car Morgan class.  While not an award winner, the honor of the invitation is one of my two Morgan high points, the other being awarded the Harry Carter award by the ¾ Morgan Group Ltd. in 2001.

 

An occasion which will be remembered by many American Morganeers were the memorial races at Road America/Elkhart Lake, in honour of Peter Morgan who passed away shortly before then. I was among the participants from throughout the United States, racing in "Murphy", although this is basically a road car. The British Anzani engine ran like a top and I enjoyed myself immensely. Below follow a series of pictures from this venue. Below follow a series of pictures from this venue.

Most of the Morgan ThreeWheelers that raced at the first Peter Morgan Memorial Race at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin (Sept. 2004).  Left to right: Bob "Kermit" Wilson, Martin Beer, Jim Nichol, Dale Barry, Fred Sisson.  Off frame were Larry Ayers, and Chris Towner.
Jim Nichol crossing the Elkhart Lake start-finish line in "Murphy", the sweeping tail AeroAll Morgan Race at Road America with Jim Nichol in Murphy being overtaken by Dennis Glavis in Skimpy

Is there anything you personally wish for on the Morgan front?

 

My primary wish was for the return of the three wheeler…a wish fulfilled.  I hope that the Morgan Motor Company keeps on innovating and thriving as the twenty-first century continues.


P.S.

This is how Jane Morgan's one-off +8 Drophead Coupé with automatic gearbox looked in its original outfit. It has been crashed and restored several times since. It also received a cherished registration number JM 53 later on. Photo Ingvar Fredriksson.

While scanning the pages of your site, I was also reminded of yet another high point in my days as a Morgan owner. A couple of weeks after meeting Peter and Jane Morgan at MOG 2 in Mt. Pocono, Pennsylvania, I begged, borrowed, and stole to raise enough money to fly 'cross the Pond.


While there, I took the train to Malvern Link and strolled the short way to the Works. While enjoying the factory, PM and Jane and I crossed paths, at which point they asked where I was staying.


On finding out that I was going to find a B & B after I wandered 'round, they insisted I stay with them, so for the next three days I was a guest at their home...


I was in heaven!


As I readied my gear to move on and collect my car hire in Stratford on Avon, Jane suggested that I drive her autobox +8 Drophead Coupé to Stratford as practice in driving on the left, so I enjoyed driving the only, to that time, automatic Morgan built (Not to mention the only +8 drophead). Things just got better through the entire holiday!