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Studebaker Stagecoach ---1of1?

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  • Studebaker Stagecoach ---1of1?

    You never know how you will hear of a Studebaker. I got to USPS early today to mail some packages. I was early before they opened and was talking with the man cleaning the floors. I have seen him for years but normally am not early. He asked what I was mailing and I told him Studebaker Parts. He says, OH Yes, I know your wife (she does most of the USPS runs). He said he has a buddy whom has the remnants of a Studebaker Stagecoach in his barn. He said that the tag on it says "1 of 1" and Studebaker. He said it is in real rough shape but the guy wants to restore it and take it to shows. I did not get a name but he said his friend is in Sedalia MO. I figured I could get the name later if needed. He said the friend was aware of SDC.


    I never knew they did stagecoaches.
    Milt

    1947 Champion (owned since 1967)
    1961 Hawk 4-speed
    1967 Avanti
    1961 Lark 2 door
    1988 Avanti Convertible

    Member of SDC since 1973

  • #2
    You are probably not the only one. Though Studebaker started business in 1852 all of their early vehicles were farm wagons. They added buggies in 1857 and sometime in the 1870s carriages. The process of making a carriage or “stage coach” vs a farm wagon is akin to the difference between making a golf cart vs a luxury automobile. So Studebaker was not sophisticated enough to be making those until 30 or so years after their founding. By that time the railroads had taken over the lion’s share of the business once held by the stage coach companies.Thus there was really no great demand for stage coaches in the later part of the 19th century. By the way the stagecoach got its name because it went from point to pint in stages. Studebaker did make a few as evidenced by the images I am including below. It would be interesting to know if the vehicle that is claimed to be a Studebaker has any identifying characteristics that would confirm its origins? If so that would be a real find and worthy of following up on.

    Click image for larger version

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    Richard Quinn
    Editor emeritus: Antique Studebaker Review

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    • #3
      Interesting that the first two are the same picture, just reworked. Long before Photoshop, too.
      RadioRoy, specializing in AM/FM conversions with auxiliary inputs for iPod/satellite/CD player. In the old car radio business since 1985.

      17A-S2 - 50 Commander convertible
      10G-C1 - 51 Champion starlight coupe
      10G-Q4 - 51 Champion business coupe
      4H-K5 - 53 Commander starliner hardtop
      5H-D5 - 54 Commander Conestoga wagon
      56B-D4 - 56 Commander station wagon
      60V-L6 - 60 Lark convertible

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Studebaker Wheel View Post
        You are probably not the only one. Though Studebaker started business in 1852 all of their early vehicles were farm wagons. They added buggies in 1857 and sometime in the 1870s carriages. The process of making a carriage or “stage coach” vs a farm wagon is akin to the difference between making a golf cart vs a luxury automobile. So Studebaker was not sophisticated enough to be making those until 30 or so years after their founding. By that time the railroads had taken over the lion’s share of the business once held by the stage coach companies.Thus there was really no great demand for stage coaches in the later part of the 19th century. By the way the stagecoach got its name because it went from point to pint in stages. Studebaker did make a few as evidenced by the images I am including below. It would be interesting to know if the vehicle that is claimed to be a Studebaker has any identifying characteristics that would confirm its origins? If so that would be a real find and worthy of following up on.

        [ATTACH=CONFIG]79559[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]79560[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]79561[/ATTACH]
        Okay, first of all, with all due respect, Mr. Quinn, these are not "Stage Coaches" in the strictest form of the word. These are a Road Coach and a private Coach. Note the advertisement calls it a "Tally-Ho" coach. In the West, and most of the rural East the Thoroughbraced coach was more common. Wells Fargo has made the smaller Concord famous again in their ads. Also most of the coaches used in the western movies of the thirties through seventies were the smaller Concords and Mud Wagons, both of which Studebaker made. They were asked in the late 1850s by Abbot & Downing to assist in making some of their coaches as they couldn't keep up with the demand. So Studebaker began to build these coaches and badged them, 'Abbot & Downing, by Studebaker' These coaches are rare and one doesn't often see them as very few survived. I believe Knott's Berry Farm has one as they own the Butterfield Stage fleet (donated in the 40s to Walter Knott's farm). Studebaker and Abbot & Downing made these coaches all the way up to 1910, I believe, and exported them world-wide. There were quite a few sent to Australia.

        This is a Stagecoach:
        This is a Mud Wagon type. Pity it's lettered as a Wells Fargo because it was a Butterfield Coach. Sorry about the huge size. I am unable to adjust pic size on this venue.


        It really wasn't possible to use a Road Coach in this country because the 'roads' would destroy it. We didn't have the national taxes here to support the maintenance of the road system that England did. Hence, our roads were such in name only outside of the cities. Back in the eastern part of the country they did improve and maintain some of the roads and the English-type coach was more common (rode a LOT better too). However the Concord and Yellowstone coaches were more common than the English-type coaches because the Thorough-braced gearing held up better on our "roads".
        Home of the famous Mr. Ed!
        K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Studebaker!
        Ron Smith
        Where the heck is Fawn Lodge, CA?

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        • #5
          I was reading some family history and in in one place it mentioned that the family brothers in Indiana modified their wagons by putting skids on them when the poorly maintained "roads" were wet so they would move more easily. It was easier on the horses as well. I had never heard of that before. This is an interesting thread. Thank you, Ron, for your insightful input. You seem to know a lot about horse drawn conveyances from the 19th century.
          Ed Sallia
          Dundee, OR

          Sol Lucet Omnibus

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          • #6
            Wow. That was a great read.

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            • #7
              While visiting a Budweiser brewery I was pleased to see the beer wagons were manufactured by Studebaker.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by studeclunker View Post
                Studebaker and Abbot & Downing made these coaches all the way up to 1910, I believe, and exported them world-wide. There were quite a few sent to Australia..
                I suspect those that went to Australia were mostly for Cobb & Company. They tried to break in to the transport trade in the U.S. but were unable to compete with the many companies already in firm control of the routes; and even those were soon displaced by the railroads.

                Click image for larger version

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                Two of our coach lines still in business are American Express and Wells Fargo.
                "All attempts to 'rise above the issue' are simply an excuse to avoid it profitably." --Dick Gregory

                Brad Johnson, SDC since 1975, ASC since 1990
                Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
                sigpic'33 Rockne 10, '51 Commander Starlight, '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée"

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                • #9
                  Well Brad, I would bet you didn't know that Butterfield Stage Lines is also still in business. Greyhound bought out the company in the early sixties because they wanted the southwest route. When training their new drivers, the instructors are very proud of this part of the Company's past. So, Butterfield still lives on, if re-badged as another 'Stage Line'.


                  Home of the famous Mr. Ed!
                  K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Studebaker!
                  Ron Smith
                  Where the heck is Fawn Lodge, CA?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by LovelandJoe View Post
                    While visiting a Budweiser brewery I was pleased to see the beer wagons were manufactured by Studebaker.
                    Others know more than I but, I believe at least one of their wagons is an original and the others may be reproductions based on it.
                    "All attempts to 'rise above the issue' are simply an excuse to avoid it profitably." --Dick Gregory

                    Brad Johnson, SDC since 1975, ASC since 1990
                    Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
                    sigpic'33 Rockne 10, '51 Commander Starlight, '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée"

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by studeclunker View Post
                      Butterfield still lives on, if re-badged as another 'Stage Line'.
                      Didn't Butterfield actually buy in to or acquire Overland outright?

                      EDIT ADDED: Google and ye shall receive. Isn't the internet wonderful?

                      https://www.legendsofamerica.com/stagecoach/
                      Last edited by rockne10; 03-24-2019, 03:43 PM. Reason: added link
                      "All attempts to 'rise above the issue' are simply an excuse to avoid it profitably." --Dick Gregory

                      Brad Johnson, SDC since 1975, ASC since 1990
                      Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
                      sigpic'33 Rockne 10, '51 Commander Starlight, '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée"

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        The article is interesting if somewhat inaccurate. The Butterfield Coaches do indeed exist and are in daily use. Butterfield went to Motorcoaches shortly after the first World War and continued in business till taken over by Greyhound. I don't know what the writer's sources were, but they aren't very reliable.
                        She would have been wiser to have at least contacted the Carriage Association of America.

                        Home of the famous Mr. Ed!
                        K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Studebaker!
                        Ron Smith
                        Where the heck is Fawn Lodge, CA?

                        Comment

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