Probably not, but fun to consider.
Our Model N (with aftermarket modifications, including rumble seat), at a New York Ford dealership, 1925:
And last summer at the New London to New Brighton tour finish line:
No, the old guy driving is not Harvey Firestone
Could be. The unusual front lights are the same, as well as many of the other features. It would be nice to see it with the top up, from the exact angle and distance from the camera the original photo was taken so as to compare the features. Jim Patrick
The tires are different.
That old photo IS of Rob's car, but the photo is not connected with the Firestone reference, other than the coincidence of the "rumble seat".
I find it very odd that the 1907 article uses the term "rumble seat". I always thought of that name as being from the 20's. I would have expected "mother-in-law seat" from such an early passage.
What's amazing is it doesn't look like Rob aged much between the period the two photos were taken.
If you start to compare all the features in the photo to the new photo it looks like all someone did was add color.
The front lights, the angle of the horn, The bailwire on the side lights, position of the tank.
One can tell that they are not the same
The guy in the new picture doesn't seem to be wearing pants, he has sandals, and the brass shines
I've been surprised to see most advertising and news articles say "rumble seat" too. In fact, I haven't seen many (or any) references to "mother in law" seat, come to think of it. I'll do a quick check and see if I can find a "MIL" reference.
Yes, the Rockefeller reference was made "tongue in cheek". Although one never knows. Our wheels do have plugs from a previous style tire and rim. I'm not sure when the Firestone rim came out, but probably by 1907?
Yes, it is the same car. The black and white photo appeared in a newspaper, and the articel was about this (black and white photo) being the third four cylinder car Ford built. Our engine number is #3. The car was well preserved, sitting in a private museum from 1947 until we bought it several years ago.
Fred, you aren't impressed with my period correct attire?
This ad is from Jan 1909
and use of rumble seat is here, and have seen it many times in early ads.
I'm beginning to think that M.I.L. seat was a much later term, maybe even in the 40's or 50's, when the "lore" of early cars began to take shape.
LOL! A little side-note from me.
I was actually trained at a very young age as a typesetter. It was a career I did not follow because I knew that it would soon die out as technology left such tasks far behind.
So. What was almost the first thing I noticed in Dan T's ad?
The "b" in "rumble" on the first line of text.
It is a "q" upside-down.
Great stuff all! Well, maybe not me.
Back to good discussion. I also have found the early use of the term "rumble seat" to be very interesting. I had always heard the term "mother-in-law" seat used for the non-folding single seat on the back of an otherwise roadster. Dicky seat is another term for the same thing. But "rumble seat" seams to have a considerable amount of original archive evidence.
It also seams that Rob has found a new windmill to tilt his foil at. (Just kidding, Rob. I love this stuff you keep finding)
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
i believe dicky seat comes from the seat on the running board where the choufer(?) would have to sit when the master wanted to drive
I dont know what happened to number 75 that was down in Anson county that I looked at about 10 years ago.It was restored in a mans basement and he had the old seat back and the photo of 75 on the assembly line with it.
he was supposed to call me to hear it run and he later died.No idea where the car got to.Probably overseas now :>( I cant remember the guys name at all but he had several machine shops he ran.
I know I told about a radiator that was hanging in a junk yard building for a N and it did eventually get gone.I think the owner sold it on ebay. He kept asking a 1000 dollars for it or something high but,it was rare.
Maybe Clayton, but I disagree.
In England a rumble seat is called a dicky seat.
I have never been able to find out why.
A neat lead. In this case your car “might” be the same one. Clearly the idea of adding the rear seat was done to both cars (and several other Model N, R, and S cars were converted back in the day. And of course the S-Roadster in 1908 came equipped that way). Statistically since it was in the May 12, 1907 paper it would have had to have been done on a car shipped before then. Assuming it would take a few days to decide to do the conversion and obtain the parts etc. I picked Apr 30 as the last possible day a Runabout could have been shipped and been converted. In that case the highest serial number Model N recorded was #4800 shipped Apr 30 and the last Model R number recorded was #280. Putting those together you have a 1 in 5080 chance that your Model N Runabout was the one that was converted. And as you look and say would someone convert a one month or two month car you could go further back. There were not any Model R Runabouts shown as shipped in the records before Apr 1907. And the last N Runabout number shown as shipped 28 Feb 1907 was #3335. Or if you say they probably would not have converted the car before it was at least 6 months old we show the last Model N we have a record of being shipped Oct 31, 1906 was car #1241. And how many of those were converted.
I think that is better odds than many lotteries. I would suggest a couple of things. First to conduct some research on Harvey Firestone’s history during that time. There is a good chance someone has photos of cars or photos of his house etc. If any of them show an unmodified Model N Runabout with the very early lights your car has and the wheels your car originally came with – then I would say it is highly likely it is the same car. Another area to research is were the wheels on your car originally Firestones? There was a thread on that within the last year probably last 4 months. Several companies provided similar looking take apart rims [Fisk is also mentioned on page 90 of 91 of “Pate’s Early Ford Automobile Encyclopedia”]. I would suspect that the car Harvey Firestone purchased would have had his tires on it. I would “guess” that you will find the original tires and wheels on your car were the double tube 28 by 2 1/2. But that is a guess and research would likely confirm or correct that. But I do not know which company or companies produced those. Clearly Firestone was a major supplier to Ford back then. Ref: http://www.firestone100.com/news/011000_3.html
While I don’t recommend people purchase lottery tickets (statistically its not a good plan for retirement savings) I would encourage you to pursue this one. So far things are lining up that it is possible. I.e. if you had a car produced after the newspaper article – then clearly it would not be possible. But so far what we see allows it to be possible. And statistically you have a fair chance of it actually being the same car. If so, I suspect Firestone company or family etc would have additional documentation. And they just might want your car in an advertisement (of course with Firestone tires).
Hap l9l5 cut off
I posted an article (surprise ) a while back showing several types of tire/rim combinations. Our N has the holes in the felloes (plugged) and the tires and rims have not been changed as of the 1925 photo above (that, I'm sure recall, as you were instrumental in finding and helping me identify as our car).
Thank you for all your great research and support of the hobby,
This late 1907 article says Ford will use all Firestone tires for 1908: