Detailed Club History

History: MG Owners Club, Inc.

After doing a lot of research and talking to current members that have been around since the early 60's, we've discovered that the history of the MGOC extends back nearly 60 years. In the late forties the club was known as the MG Car Club, San Francisco Centre. This club eventually grew into the present Region of the S.C.C.A. A few years after that, a group of MG owners decided to form a separate MG Club, and the current MG Owners Club is the result.

The Club as we know it today began in 1957 and was incorporated in 1958. About a year later the club became the Northern California Centre of the MG Car Club. The directors of the MG Owners Club approached John Duncan, a local MG enthusiast, for advice about arranging an association with the MG Car Club. This was because they knew the Duncans had been entertained by John Thornley while visiting Abingdon.

A letter to Mr. Thornley brought a quick response, and he was only too glad to fully recommend to Mr. Lowry that the request be granted. With such sponsorship it took little to complete the details. The club is also associated with the North American MGB Register, the North American MGA Register, and the New England MG T Register.

From its beginnings in the fifties, and through the sixties and seventies, the Club was very active in rallies, and was prominent in pioneering Variety Rallies. During this time, the Club joined the Northern California Sports Car Council (NCSSC) and took part in the NCSCC-sanctioned autocrosses, with a majority of the members taking part.

As the older MGs started showing signs of wear, the membership started turning toward restoration and car shows, although they were still active in rallies and tours to interesting places and good places to eat.

The Club is made up of all models of MG, from MMM (prewar) cars to 1980 MGB Limited Editions, and a few variants, and even an MGA electric car. The Octagon is the Club newsletter and is published monthly with pictures and articles on events, technical information, and everything else a good newsletter requires.

In recent years, two other area clubs have merged with the MGOC. In 1998, the Northern California Chapter of the North American MGA Register joined the club. Members of this group, formed in 1978, remain active in the combined club. Another club, the San Francisco Peninsula T Register was formed in 1973 and is now an informal sub-group of the MGOC. A T Register Chairman remains an active part of the club.

Every month we have a meeting and a 'Natter, and most months have a special event as well. An event can be a tour, rally, picnic, technical session, or even a barbeque. Our main event for the past thirteen years has been an all-MG show, MGs by the Bay, in Danville, California. We have an average of 100 MGs at this event, and give trophies in about 17 categories. Our other main events are the annual picnic in late summer and the awards banquet in Mid-winter.

The MG Owners Club has no relationship to the international club of that name formed in England in the 1970's.

By George Steneberg
Corresponding Secretary
MG Owners Club






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