Fred P. Baumgartner was a shipping agent in Portland Oregon:
In March, 1907, the Baumgartner's purchased a six cylinder Ford:
As will be seen later, Mrs. Baumgartner enjoys driving the Ford too:
Interesting thought, Portland to Seattle via deer track. There was no I-5. In fact,
even Highway 99 was years away ! That trip would have required a circuitous, town-
to-town route of one lane dirt roads. Oh excuse me, MUD roads (we're talking about
Portland and Seattle here !). That would have been a helluva trip ! I'd like to see
what a road map from 1907 looks like from that area, especially the route/s available from Portland north to Chehalis.
Hang with me, the Baumgartner's take many trips, including to Seattle.
Mrs. Baumgartner wins first place for best touring car float in the Portland "Great Rose Fiesta," June, 1907:
There's a Model K under there somewhere:
In July, 1907, the Baumgartner's entered a 135 mile endurance run. The route passed through the towns of Oregon City, Salem and McMinnville. The "capacity" listed with each car is the gas tank size:
Burger, if your still with me, I wonder if the route would have resembled this?
It looks like Mrs. Baumgartner could kick the crap out of Mr. Baumgartner and would drive the Model K ANY TIME SHE WANTED
When she said jump...on the way up Mr. Baumgartner ask how high!
I think your right. You'll see why a little further along......
The endurance run began, and news reports came in at the halfway point of Salem, OR. Twenty cars began the run, with the lead car, a Matheson, falling out before the halfway point:
The second page of the article says no animals (except a snake) were killed, no children run over, and generally a good trip (except for the frightened horse who broke from his harness, dragging the owner for a distance):
The article also says "some of the racers are well stimulated by their stop at the Capitol, and are bound to get funny going home":
"Besides some of the owners are well stimulated by their stop at the Capital"... Is the Capital a place where one could partake in liquid refreshments?
Of course the Baumgartners would only stop if Mrs. Baumgartner said it was OK
Early Fords still stop at local gin joints on rare occasion. Maybe something's never change?
that looks like minnesota, buffalo?
Busted....... . It's our "unofficial" stop. Many years ago our N broke down there, and it's the damnedest thing, now the Fords (and a few other brands) stop for a quick safety meeting every year.
Now, back to the story:
Nine of twenty cars participating in the run had perfect scores (no adjustments or repairs, except tire repair). The Model K was one of the nine. However, a Pope-Hartford won the overall cup because of less fuel consumption. The winning car made just over 12 miles per gallon, while the Ford K made 9.5:
Baumgartener's Ford was the only non-dealer car on the run:
Denny, your about to learn more about Mrs. Baumgartner, and how she almost spent a lot of time in Seattle.
This Model K is becoming well travelled. The Baumgartner's have their car shipped to Seattle, and will drive it back to Portland:
Burger, if you see this, the roads are described as "wretched and perpendicular." Your comments?
In September, they return to Portland with the Ford:
Mrs. Baumgartner's adventure with the Model K is next...
geez rob, you keep us in such suspense !!! i wont sleep a wink tonight
"There may be collisions and smashes, and possibly a few people killed."
I enjoyed that writer's sarcastic wit.
Being into NW history, particularly transportation and development, I believe the route north
from Portland would have involved a ferry ride from the Oregon side of the Columbia to Longview.
From there, it was up the Toutle River to Toledo, then a whole lot of woods and mud, probably
taking in Winlock (?) before finally arriving back into "civilized" country as they got closer to
Chehalis. While still no walk in the park, north from there would be on more established paths
between closer towns. Even today, get off the I-5 corridor and there really is no alternate route
that doesn't zig and zag and visit lots of wet woodlands and little else. I can only imagine what
it looked like in 1907 !
In early September, 1907, Mrs. Baumgartner becomes a well known figure in Seattle as a result of injuring a bicyclist while driving the Ford six. One "big, burly man" incites the onlookers to tear apart the "machine" but the police intervene. Mrs. Baumgartner is released on $1,500 bond, the equivalent of $35,000-$40,000 today:
Quite a turn to the tale!
Tune in later for the next exciting chapter of Fords moving forward!
I am still reading.
Perhaps the "big, burly man" thought twice when he saw the big, burly woman at the wheel ???