I think the first one is a K The next two are NRS cars.
The last one is a B I think.
Second one has running boards and Model S fenders; maybe it is supposed to be an "S"?
The floor makes it obvious this is the Greenfield Village.
The first is a 1907 or 08 Model K touring. Second is either a Model R or Model S runabout. The primary difference is the S runabout had a pointed trunk, like the model N, whereas the Model R had a rounded or "beetle" trunk.
Last is what I suspect is an early Model B. I've seen photos and ads for Model B with both step plates and running boards, and I assume (although have not read) the first (late 1904) had step plates.
Great photos, probably from "The Henry Ford" (I believe the numbers on the R/S and B are photo file numbers (Hap?).
Thanks for posting,
Sorry, I meant to type "Erich."
Have yet to visit G.V. Doe they have more than one of each of these on display?
Have yet to visit G.V. Do they have more than one of each of these on display?
These four photos are of cars owned, or previously owned, by The Henry Ford. The first car is THF's Model K. In real life it is painted blue, which does not come out well in a polychromatic film image. It is still owned by the THF.
The second car is THF's Model S runabout. The Model S has several features that distinguish it from the Models N and R. The S Runabout and the N runabout share the same body, chassis and 28x3 wheels. The R and S share the same fenders, running boards, and a mechanical oiler. The R came equipped with 30x3 wheels and tires. In addition to the larger wheels, the Model R had a unique body. The turtle deck behind the seat on the R is rounded at the rear instead of coming to a point like the bodies of the Models N and S runabouts.
The third car is a very early Model N, certainly a prototype, and possibly Model N #1. It has a number of characteristics that were not carried over to the production Model Ns that appeared beginning in July, 1906. Two of these three
unique characteristics can be seen in the photo, including a non-standard design for the brake pull rod lever, a round step plate in stead of rectangular (note that not all Model Ns came with rectangular step plates. The July and at least some of the August, 1906 production cars had the round step plates). Finally, this car has a unique transmission frame that encloses the Model N transmission.
This car was owned by THF and was on display on the museum floor for many years. In 1985 it was de-accessioned and sold at auction. The funds obtained from its sale were used to purchase the original Model N that is now on display in the museum.
This car may have been Model N #1. It is known that Mr. Ford kept the first Model N for himself. In 1907 if an American wanted to drive their American built car in Canada, the owner had to register the car and put a Canadian license plate on it. A very large collection of personal papers of Henry and Clara Ford found their way to the Archives in the 1950's, and they were organized into what is called "The Fairlane Papers". Once while looking for something else in the Fairlane Papers I ran across Mr. Ford's Canadian license card for his Model N. The card indicated that the car's serial number was "1". Mr. Ford clearly kept the car. If this is the same Model N then this was the car that was introduced at the New York Auto Show in January, 1906, and would be the same car photographed in front of the Piquette Avenue Plant. I never had the opportunity to examine this car, so this is pure speculation on my part.
The last photo is of The Henry Ford's Model B. This is a very interesting car. It was located in Manchester, NH in 1923 and was owned at the time by a Ford dealer there. The car was in completely original condition (a photo of the car when it was being acquired can be found in The Henry Ford Office Papers). When the dealer was contacted by Mr. Ford's Office, the dealer agreed to trade the Model B for a brand new Model T Fordor sedan. The dealer got the sedan, and Mr. Ford got the Model B. There is no doubt in my mind which is the more desirable car.
The Model B has been at least repainted. The car was returned to running condition for the centennial in 2003. The original Splitdorf Coil was gone and a Kingston Coil was in its place. A new coil box was built using the outside hardware from an original coil box, but inside are four KW coils. The body is completely original, and still retains the warning sticker under the front seat reminding the owner to drain the water from the radiator to avoid freezing. As Mr. Ford said in the book "My Life and Work" the Model B was a very good car for its time.
One of THF's cars that is not pictured here is their 1908 Model S Roadster. This car has been cleaned up recently and is now on display on the Museum floor.
The other Letter series cars that are currently not on display (The Model S runabout, the Model R runabout, the Model F and C) are still retained by THF and are in long term storage. THF does have a complete collection of all the early Ford letter series cars.
There will never be more than 7 complete collections of the letter series cars because only 7 Model Bs survive from the 500 car production run.
Trent, thank you so much for the detailed explanation of the above images.