But not right away. First, a story.....
I enjoy researching early Fords, and often find a chain of events involving early cars, and the people who owned them. This is one such story.
James H. Stearns was born in Vermont in 1843. By the turn of the last century, he was a successful businessman and partner in the manufacturing firm Parker, Stearns and Sutton. The firm produced various rubber based products:
Mr. Stearn's name appeared in newspapers regarding business and social events. In January1905 he is reported traveling in west Texas checking the feasibility of growing rubber trees with the aid of irrigation:
In April 1905 Mr. Stearns travels to Texas again, with an exclusive group on a 1,000 mile horseback hunt:
As mentioned above, James H. Stearns is also the owner of the Cove Spring Hotel on Spofford Lake, New Hampshire.
In June 1905, Mr. and Mrs. Stearns are involved in a carriage accident when their horse bolts. I don't know if the Stearns family own an automobile at this time, but have found no evidence of one:
Next, the cars of James H. Stearns.
Rob, This will be interesting for me. I look forward to the next chapter of the story. Thanks. Joe Stearns
I can see why.......
By August of 1906, the Stearns family own their first motor car, a 50 hp Thomas Flyer:
The Thomas should be a 1906 model (I believe the 1905 Thomas was a 40 hp car):
By October of the next year, the family own a new Ford Model K touring car:
Each year the Stearns travel to their summer home in New Hampshire for four months over the summer. The following year (October 1908) the Stearns return to Brooklyn from their summer home:
I would like to know more about the purpose of the bag in the second picture..........
Why am I not surprised......
More to follow (not about the bag).
In 1909 the Stearns again travel to their summer home, for the third season using their Model K:
And like clockwork they return to New York in October, stopping in Boston and Hartford along the way:
While the Stearns family had the Thomas one season, they've now used the Ford three seasons.
Interesting stuff! Thank you Rob H!
And, by the way, Rob H & Dave H, I have no desire to become more acquainted with the bag. Thank you very much.
Drive carefully, and enjoy, W2
Wayne, Thank you.
The "rest of the story."
As evidenced by this corporate restructure report, the manufacturing firm owned by James Stearns was well capitalized in 1906 when partner B. Franklin Sutton retired:
A map search shows the Brooklyn address where the Stearns spent their Brooklyn winters. It looks as though the area has fallen on hard times. Their address is the building with the large extension to the rear:
However, all things must come to an end. We saw the news clip showing the family returned to Brooklyn in Oct 1909 with their Ford (Model K) touring car. By January 1, 1910, the family has purchased a new car, an Apperson, evidenced by this January 1, 1910 New York registration list:
1910 Apperson advertisement. As this ad shows, a 40 hp Apperson now costs $3,000, almost the same price as the 1907 Model K. Prices of moderate to high priced cars, like lighter cars, will continue to lower, evidently as the industry becomes more competitive and manufacturing techniques improve?
And, the summer routine begins again, with the Stearns heading to New Hampshire for the summer:
One year later, this trip to New Hampshire is repeated (1911). However no mention of a car is made. James H. Stearns is reported to be recuperating from a brain tumor.
In September 1911, Mr. Stearns passes:
Sometimes I begin researching a specific car, and become involved with the lives of the people who owned that car (maybe that's the way it should be), learning as much about the people and times they lived in as the automobile itself.
James H. Stearns was a member of the New York 23rd Regiment National Guard. When I searched the unit, they were activated for a short period during the Civil War, and served in three or four combat actions. I don't know if Mr. Stearns was a veteran of those battles, however did find a "James Stearns" listed as a Cavalryman, 24th Regiment, New York National Guard (typo?). He would have been of age to have served, being 20 years old when the unit was activated.
As with most Model K owners I've found records of, they usually owned a large car before, immediately after, and often during the time they owned the Ford K. Very seldom (one instance) do I find a Model K owner (new car) moving from a Model K directly to a Model T. What this tells me (and no great surprise) is these owners were in the market for higher priced, higher power cars, and when Ford left this market, they moved on.
Again, no surprise, just interesting to me.
If anyone read this through to the end, I hope you enjoyed the story. Have a good Veteran's Day,