How rare a vehicle is the 1911 Stafford that made an appearance Thursday morning in Independence?

How rare a vehicle is the 1911 Stafford that made an appearance Thursday morning in Independence?
So rare that the one that was on display at the entrance of the Harry S Truman Library & Museum is the only known Stafford still in existence.
The vehicle, one of just 300 manufactured between 1911 and 1915 at the defunct Stafford Motor Car Company in Kansas City, is owned by DeNean Stafford of Tifton, Ga.
“I didn’t think that there were any Staffords left,” said Mary Childers of Independence. “My uncles used to work at the old Stafford factory in Kansas City. God, they’d be thrilled if they knew one still exists.”
DeNean Stafford was in the area to participate Saturday in the Art of the Car Concours, a vintage car show to benefit student scholarships at the Kansas City Art Institute. He stopped by the Truman Library to celebrate the connection between the Stafford model and Harry Truman.
“There’s a picture in the Library of Harry and Bess (Wallace Truman) and Harry’s cousins all in a Stafford,” said Concours Chairman Marshall Miller. Truman had brought a 1911 Stafford in 1913. “What we found out in our research is that Truman started out with a sedan model, but wanted a racing style vehicle, so he re-modeled his.”
Miller said he first got a glimpse of DeNean Stafford’s vehicle in March at the Amelia Island Concours in Florida. Miller asked Stafford if he would bring the vehicle “home” to Kansas City, and Stafford obliged.
The Stafford vehicle has a 112-inch wheelbase, with an overhead-cam engine, a sliding-gear transmission and a shaft drive. DeNean Stafford said when he first bought the car its original coachwork had been replaced so he took the car to D&D Classic auto restoration shop in Covington, Ohio.
There, Roger James and Mark Kennison of D&D redesigned the body from scratch based on photographs of a Stafford roadster race car provided by Childers. The remodeled version features black paint, red upholstery and plenty of shining brass.
“That car, in my view, is a work of art,” Miller said.
“That is the most gorgeous car I have ever seen in my life,” Childers said.
DeNean Stafford said he hasn’t made an official connection to the Stafford lineage, but he is intrigued by the possibility of being related to Terry Stafford, the original owner of the Stafford Motor Car Company.
“We very will could be related,” DeNean Stafford said. “I haven’t nailed that down yet, but my family originated in North Carolina and Tennessee and then they moved on to (Springfield) Missouri. It’ll be interesting to see where that (lineage) goes.”
As for the Truman connection, DeNean Stafford said: “I think that is very, very unique. There were only so many of these cars built. Who’s to say that this is not Truman’s car? I’m not saying that it is, but who knows.”