TUPELO • Joe Marshall, like hundreds of others who attended and watched the Tupelo Automobile Museum auction last month, was interested in several cars. How much would people pay for them? Where would they be going?

“There were several big players there, but I was just a very small player,” he said.

But Marshall, who knows a thing or two about cars – he’s the owner of Barnes Crossing Automotive Group – also got caught up in the excitement of that day.

He had his eye on a few vehicles, and ended up buying nine.

“I’m not a big car collector but I do have an interest in cars,” Marshall said. “I was interested to see what the cars would bring, but when you get down there at something like that, the fever just took over. ... I was planning on buying something, but I didn’t plan on buying nine,” he said with a smile.

The vehicles he bought were the 1941 Lincoln Zephyr Convertible Coupe, 1954 Buick Roadmaster Convertible, 1970 Ford Mustang Mach I 428 Cobra, 1977 Pontiac Trans-Am, 1978 Ford Bronco, 1981 DeLorean DMC 12, 1984 Chevrolet C10, 1989 Chevrolet Corvette and 1994 Dodge Viper.

“I bought all domestic cars because I didn’t know if I could get parts for the ones that weren’t,” he said.

Marshall has the cars on display at his various dealerships – Barnes Crossing Hyundai Mazda, Barnes Crossing Kia, Barnes Crossing Chevrolet Buick GMC, for example. Marshall isn’t planning to keep them all, as he’s willing to sell to anyone who’s interested. Not all of the cars are in working condition, as was the case with many of the vehicles in the museum, but Marshall said he’s not going to spend any additional money to get them running unless there are serious offers for them.

“We’ve had interest in the Roadmaster and in the DeLorean,” he said. “I’m not looking to sell them, necessarily, but that is the business I’m in. So if there’s an offer, I’ll sell them.”

Marshall spent $335,000 at the auction – with the proceeds going to an educational foundation, a good cause he was more than willing to support.

“I tried to buy a few of the others,” he added with a laugh. “But I was spending too much money.”

dennis.seid@journalinc.com Twitter: @dennisseid

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