Fundraisers for charity are a popular and highly necessary way for these charities to raise money. In tough economic times today, car donations are one of the easiest ways for people strapped for cash to still make a difference. I don’t know the when the first fundraiser was held using a car donation, but the first one I witnessed was held in Carthage Texas, in 1971. The car that was donated was worth 25 dollars, and the fundraiser employed a raffle and a sledgehammer!

Before you ask what in the heck a sledgehammer was used for in a fundraiser, let me set the stage. A local college student was badly injured in a car accident, and his family was going through a bad stretch, money wise. Hospital bills wiped them out, with no end to the bills in the foreseeable future. Some of his friends came up with a wacky way to help raise money for the bills, and a local car dealer donated an old trade in to the cause. The car was old and didn’t run well, but all the windows were intact, and the body undamaged.

Raffle tickets were sold for a dollar apiece, and many hundreds of people bought one for the chance to grab that sledgehammer and give that old beater a beating. That car donation actually helped save a young mans life, albeit in a rather unorthodox manner. And though modern fundraisers are quite tame in comparison, I must admit I was quite excited when my raffle ticket was the first one drawn!

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