Friday, May 15, 2009

Car Clubs Dig Carriages

Oh, that evil machine that spelled the end of the carriage era. Who would ever want to drive one of those temperamental contraptions over a horse and carriage. Wait until you are stuck. We’ll pull you out with our team. Tough times for the carriage industry and great times for the fledgling automotive industry. I can imagine it was a dramatic period for Americans as this life changing event was taking shape. Carriage factories all across the country closed. Thousands of workers were unemployed and were forced to learn new skills.

Sounds familiar.

The summer is a great time of year for car club tours. We are fortunate enough to see a number of these groups visit us every season. This group was a Brass Car Club.

Don’t quote me on this but I think the term Brass Car is any car that was manufactured prior to 1917. Of course this was the transition period from horse drawn carriage travel to automobiles.

This beautiful Marmon had a little trouble if I recall. When pulling out of our driveway something broke and oil ran out all over the place. The group was from Indiana and Illinois and they were on a three day tour. So the poor little Marmon had to go back in the trailer and finish the rest of the tour being towed.

Not sure what make this car is but it’s sure a pretty vehicle. Although by this time automobiles were beginning to develop styles of their own the influence of the carriage is still evident in the body and chassis details.

My favorite of this group was this early Packard. It’s rather difficult to tell but it was huge. It made the Model T’s look small. Beautiful body workmanship, brass and leather all mixed in with a puff of smoke.

This Stanley Steamer was a real beauty as well. It was an innovative time and manufacturers were using combustion engines, steam engines and electric motors to power these horseless carriages.

Tour groups like this one are always welcome and equally fun for us to see. We’ve seen Model A Clubs, Brass Clubs, Street Rod Clubs and British Clubs. It’s not only car enthusiasts but we are seeing more groups of people traveling with their club whatever that happens to be. Colonial Carriage and the community of Columbus is a great destination for your tour.

Come by and see us sometime and bring your friends.


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