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Forever Young: Collectors Celebrate 100 Years of the 'Tin Lizzie'

There is no Villeroy & Boch tableware, and only a few ladies can be seen wearing appropriate, elegant dresses.

But that won't stop thousands from enjoying the biggest "T Party" on this side of the Atlantic.

In celebration of the Ford Model T's 100-year anniversary, Ford and The Model T Ford Club of America are hosting the 2008 Centennial Model T Party this week in Richmond, Indiana. More than 900 Model T vehicles and their owners have gathered at the Wayne County Fairgrounds to pay tribute to the "most important car of the twentieth century," which hit dealer showrooms on October 1, 1908.

Enthusiasts have a chance to show off their customized vehicles, compete in "Tin Lizzie" races, trade Model T parts and stories, and even get autographs from Edsel Ford II and Henry Ford III.

Mark Fields, Ford's President of the Americas, and Ford historian Bob Kreipke already stopped by on Tuesday to speak with Model T fans and celebrate Ford's past and future products.

For those who don't know why this vintage Ford commands so much attention, the Model T was the first automobile to be mass-produced on a moving assembly line. Manufactured in several countries and available on six continents, it also stands out as the first truly global car and it standardized the left-hand steering wheel in America.

With 15 million units sold, the Model T was the most successful vehicle in history until 1972, when it was surpassed by the Volkswagen Beetle.