September 22, 2020


Westcott Carriage Co. (1909)

Richmond, Indiana

Westcott Motor Car Co.

Richmond, Indiana (1910-1916)

Springfield, Ohio (1916-1925)

This is a Westcott radiator emblem (1911-1912)     mjs
Size: 68mm wide 64mm high    MM: Unknown

The Westcott Carriage Company entered the automotive field in 1909 with a motor buggy but in 1910 the company was reorganized as the Westcott Motor Car Company and introduced a 40 hp four-cylinder car offered both as a five-passenger touring and as a two-passenger roadster. The Westcott was an assembled car but was well built and developed a good reputation. 

A 50 hp six-cylinder model joined the line in 1913 and from 1916 Westcott produced six-cylinder cars only but these were offered in a variety of body styles. In 1916 the company moved to Springfield, Ohio.

Production of the Westcott increased year by year, apart from a slight slow down in 1918 probably due the effects of the First World War. 1921 was the best year for Westcott with the production of 1710 cars but then production began to fall. The company was in receivership early in 1925 and it was all over for the Westcott.


The first Westcott highwheeler buggies displayed a rectangular nameplate with cut corners on the top of the radiator, see attached photo:

This is a Westcott highwheeler with a radiator nameplate (1908) 

Close-up showing the nameplate (1908)

Unfortunately, the detail of the Westcott nameplate cannot be seen. If you have a clearer photo, please let me know, in order to update this post.

The Westcott 40 cars introduced in 1910 did not carry a radiator emblem but displayed a brass "Westcott" script on the radiator core, see Westcott advertisement below. 

This is a Westcott ad showing a radiator script (1910)    mm

The Westcott radiator script is also seen on the following original photo from the 1910 Glidden Tour:

This is a Westcott with a radiator script (1910)     dpl

Original Westcott radiator scripts are rare, see example below:

This is a Westcott radiator script (1910-c1914)    mjs
Size: 235mm wide

The Westcott name was also displayed on the hub caps, see example below:

This is an early Westcott hub emblem (c1910)   ms

From about 1911, the Westcott carried the shield shaped, black and white enamel radiator emblem shown above at the top of this post and again below. This Westcott radiator emblem is extremely rare.

This is a Westcott radiator emblem (1911-1912)    mjs
Size: 68mm wide 64mm high     MM: Unknown

The Westcott radiator emblem was changed by 1912, to a round enamel emblem finished in white and black enamel, as shown below. This Westcott radiator emblem is also extremely rare.

This is a Westcott radiator emblem (c1912-1913)    tam
Size: 64mm diameter   MM: Unknown

Westcott advertisements show a change in radiator emblem design for 1913, see below:

This is an ad for the Westcott Six showing the new radiator emblem (1913)   ms

The new black and white enamel Westcott radiator emblem shown below is very rare:

This is a Westcott radiator emblem (1913-1916)     mjs
Size: 57mm diameter    MM: Childs

The Westcott radiator emblem shown below is from a 1915 Westcott on display at the Wayne County Historical Museum in Richmond, Indiana. This Westcott radiator emblem appears to be finished in enamel in the center of the emblem only and is very rare.

This is a Westcott radiator emblem (1915)      wchm
Size: Unknown    MM: Unknown

There was a change in emblem design when Westcott moved to Springfield in 1916, see black enamel Westcott radiator emblem shown below. This Westcott radiator emblem is very rare.

This is a Westcott radiator emblem (1916-1919)    mjs
Size: 69mm diameter    MM: Unknown

The smaller black enamel Westcott emblem shown below may have been a radiator emblem but more likely it is a hub emblem. However, I cannot confirm this. This Westcott emblem is very rare.

This is a Westcott emblem (c1916-1919)     mjs
Size: 40mm diameter   MM: Unknown

There was a complete change of design for the Westcott radiator emblem used from 1920, see example below. This Westcott radiator emblem is scarce.

This is a Westcott radiator emblem (1920-1925)    mjs
Size: 54mm wide 54mm high    MM: Unknown

Beware, there is a Pulfer reproduction of this Westcott emblem. It has the "WESTCOTT" letters incorrectly finished in orange enamel and has a flat back with no maker's mark, see example below:

This is a reproduction Westcott radiator emblem     ms

Some Westcott models continued to display a nickel plated radiator script into the 1920's, see example below
This is a Westcott car displaying a radiator script (c1920)   don o'brien


Read Motor Car Co. (1913-1914)

Detroit, Michigan

This is a Read radiator emblem (1913-1914)     mjs
Size: 58mm diameter   MM: Unknown

The Read Motor Car Company was organized in mid-1913 for the manufacture of a rather ordinary 20 hp four-cylinder touring car. A creditor sued the company in December 1913 and the Read was finished in 1914. Very few Read cars were built.


The Read radiator emblem shown above is very rare.


Darling Motors Co. (1917)

Dayton, Ohio

This is a Darling radiator emblem (1917)    mjs
Size: 69mm high 48mm wide    MM: Unknown

The Darling automobile, which was announced enthusiastically in late 1916, was a six-cylinder touring automobile. But the enthusiasm quickly disappeared. Shortly after production of the Darling began in the spring of 1917, it was suddenly stopped. Very few Darling automobiles were built.


The Darling radiator emblem shown above is extremely rare.


Dragon Automobile Co. (1906-1908)

Detroit, Michigan (1906)

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (1907-1908)

Dragon Motor Co. (1908)

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

This is a Dragon radiator script (1907)    bmhv

The Dragon Automobile Company was established in the summer of 1906 and production began later that year. The Dragon was a well designed 25 hp four-cylinder car offered in touring and runabout styles. Production began in Detroit and the first Dragon appeared at the New York Automobile Show in December 1906. Production then moved to a plant in Philadelphia.

Unfortunately, the Dragon Automobile Company did not care too much about quality control and also did not pay their suppliers or other creditors. Very soon there were serious complaints about the poor quality of the Dragon and several creditors sued for redress. By the end of 1907 the Dragon Automobile Company was finished and had been replaced by the Dragon Motor Company but by March 1908 this company was finished too. 


The Dragon did not carry a radiator emblem but displayed the Dragon name on a brass script attached to the radiator core, see example above at the top of this post. 

The Dragon name was also shown on the hub caps, see below:

This is a Dragon hub cap (1906-1908)    bmhv


Packard Motor Car Co. (1905-1923)
Detroit, Michigan

This is a Packard 3-ton truck emblem (c1911-1915)     mjs
Size: 139mm wide 120mm high    MM: None

James Ward Packard had been making passenger cars since 1899 before he reorganized his business to establish the Packard Motor Car Company in 1902 and move his manufacturing plant to Detroit in 1903 (see Packard).

The Packard was quickly recognized as an excellent, high quality automobile and was bought by some wealthy customers, including William Rockerfeller. The Packard Model L introduced in November 1903 was the first to have the distinctive Packard radiator configuration that would be the Packard hallmark for decades to follow.  

Packard used the Model F car chassis as the basis for some delivery trucks in 1903 and began to build truck chassis for a few test trucks in 1904. Production of commercial vehicles began in 1905 with a 1-1/2-ton truck with double chain drive and powered by a 15 hp engine located under the driver's seat. This was replaced by a 3-ton capacity truck in 1908, which was powered by a 24 hp four-cylinder engine located under a hood. In 1911, one of these trucks carried a 3-ton load in the first crossing by truck from New York to San Francisco. The Packard truck range was widened in 1912 to include 2-ton and 5-ton capacity units. The lighter Packard trucks moved to worm drive by 1914 but the heavier trucks used chain drive until 1920. 

Large numbers of Packard trucks were bought by the US Army for use in World War I and many more were exported to Allied countries involved in the conflict in Europe. Packard E-Series trucks were used by Goodyear in 1917 in a nationwide program to improve the performance of pneumatic tires for use on trucks. By 1920, Packard offered a five truck models ranging from 1-1/2-ton to 7-ton capacity. The 2-ton Model X was fitted with four-speed transmission and used pneumatic tires. Packard truck chassis were also used to build some charabancs and buses. 

Packard truck production ceased in 1923, although some body building companies later used Packard passenger car chassis to build ambulances and funeral cars.  


Packard did not use emblems on its automobiles until 1928 and, although Packard had a trademark script, it did not use radiator scripts on passenger cars until about 1924-1925 and even then mainly for export models. Instead, Packard relied on its distinctive radiator shape, first used in 1903, as its main external identification feature for its passenger cars. This was not quite the same for Packard trucks.

The first Packard trucks in 1905 and 1906 did not have a radiator, so, instead, displayed "Mnf by Packard Motor Car Co., Detroit, Mich" painted on a side panel under the driver's seat, with the "Packard" name in the trademark script style, see original photo from 1905 shown below:

Packard Model TA truck showing "Packard" side script (1905)  dpl

Close-up showing "Packard" side script (1905)    dpl

However, not all Packard trucks displayed the "Packard" name externally at this time, see the following original photo of a 1906 Packard truck below, which has no external identification:

This is a Packard truck (1906)    dpl

The "Packard" name was displayed on Packard patent/serial plates similar to the plates used on Packard passenger cars, see example below:

Packard passenger car patent/serial plate (c1907)    ms

By 1908, Packard trucks used the distinctive Packard radiator, similar to the Packard passenger cars, see original photo shown below:

This is a Packard truck with distinctive radiator shape (1908)  dpl 

By 1911, Packard trucks began to display a triangular Packard truck emblem on a side panel just forward of the driver's compartment, see original photo example below:

Packard truck showing side emblem (1911)    dpl

This Packard truck side panel emblem is seen more clearly on the following original photo of a 1915 Packard truck:

Packard truck showing side panel emblem (1915)     dpl

Close-up showing side panel emblem (1915)    dpl

Some Packard trucks in this period also had the "Packard" name and the triangular emblem painted on the side of the hood, see example shown below:

Packard truck with hood side emblems (c1915)    tom

Close-up showing triangular emblem & hood side emblem (c1915)

The Packard truck emblem shown in the above original photos is the same as the triangular, painted brass Packard truck emblem shown above at the top of this post and again below. This Packard truck emblem is rare.

This is a Packard 3-ton truck emblem (c1911-1915)     mjs
Size: 139mm wide 120mm high    MM: None

This Packard truck emblem is for a 3-ton truck. I expect that similar emblems were used on the Packard 2-ton and 5-ton trucks. although I cannot confirm this.  

From about 1917, some Packard trucks displayed the "Packard" name on a cast metal Packard script attached to the radiator tank top, see example shown below on a surviving 1917 Packard truck:

Packard Express truck with script radiator emblem (1917) i.pinimg

Some Packard trucks had the same cast Packard script mounted on the truck side panel under the driver's seat, see original photo shown below:

Packard truck with side script emblem (1917)    dpl

Close-up showing side script emblem (1917)   dpl

Packard dump truck with radiator & side script emblems (1922) iowa80

However, I note that not all Packard trucks after 1917 displayed the "Packard" script on the radiator or on the cab side. Indeed, the majority of original photos of Packard trucks in the period from 1917 to 1923 show no emblem at all and, presumably, Packard relied on the shape of the radiator for their identification, as did Packard passenger cars in this period.

September 14, 2020


Sunset Automobile Co. (1900-1906)

San Francisco, California

Victory Motor Car Co. (1906-1913)

San Jose, California

This is a Sunset 30 radiator script (1909)      sam
Size: 365mm wide

The Sunset Automobile Company started in 1900 by producing a small steam runabout. A new 10 hp two-cylinder gasoline engine powered Sunset runabout replaced the Sunset steamer in 1904. Touring and surrey models joined the roadster model early in 1906, together with a new 20 hp four-cylinder car. But then disaster struck and the Sunset factory was destroyed by the San Franciso earthquake in April 1906.

The Sunset Automobile Company teamed up with the Knapp Manufacturing Company and the Victory Motor Car Company took over production of the Sunset at a new factory built in San Jose. Three 15 hp Sunset models were offered for 1907, a two-cylinder runabout, a three-cylinder runabout and a three-cylinder touring. A new roadster model was introduced in 1908, which had some success in local racing events. A new Model 30 appeared in 1909 and was available in roadster and touring body styles.

The history of the Sunset after 1909 is confused. Some references suggest that production of the Sunset did not proceed into 1910, when the key figures in the management left the company. The Standard Catalog refers to a 1913 report that the Sunset was being built under the aegis of the California Motor Car Company but the Sunset factory in San Jose was sold that year.


The first Sunset steamer runabouts did not have a radiator and would not have carried an emblem but most likely did have a small maker's nameplate attached to the body.

The 1904 Sunset gasoline car did have a hood and a radiator and carried a small radiator emblem. A surviving 1904 Sunset also displays the "Sunset" name on an interesting brass radiator "script", see photos shown below:

Sunset surrey with radiator emblem & script (1904) glen miller

Close-up showing radiator emblem & script (1904)  flickr

The small rectangular, painted metal Sunset radiator emblem shown above is one of the earliest American radiator emblems. It is inscribed "Sunset Automobile Co. Manufacturers, San Francisco, CA.". An original Sunset radiator emblem would be extremely rare.

The brass Sunset radiator script has the "Sunset" name set in front of a sinking sun. This script is unlikely to be an original script from 1904.

The Sunset radiator emblem can still just be seen in the following original photo of a 1906 Sunset touring model:

Sunset touring with radiator emblem (1906)  ms

The larger Sunset Model 30 appeared in 1909 and displayed the brass "Sunset 30" radiator script shown above at the top of this post. Original Sunset radiator scripts are very rare. 


Riker Electric Motor Co. (1898-1899)

Brooklyn, New York

Riker Electric Vehicle Co. (1899-1900)

Elizabethport, New Jersey

Electric Vehicle Co. (1900-1903)

Hartford, Connecticut

Riker Motor Vehicle Co. (1900-1902)

Elizabethport, New Jersey

This is a Riker Motor Vehicle Company nameplate (c1901)     mjs
Size: 113mm wide 48mm high

Andrew Lawrence Riker established the Riker Electric Motor Company in Brooklyn, New York. He designed an electric three-wheeler in 1884 and built his first complete electric car in 1894. Riker then built an electric racer that won the Narragansett Park race at Rhode Island in 1896, and a few years later in a special low-slung electric torpedo he did a mile in 63 seconds and also won the first Long Island road race in 1900. Riker had built a four-wheel electric passenger car in 1895 and made his first sale in 1897. He began to manufacture electric delivery vans, hansom cabs and heavy trucks in 1898.

A.E.Riker reorganized as the Riker Electric Vehicle Company in 1899 and moved to Elizabethport in New Jersey. Riker sold his company in 1900 to the Electric Vehicle Company who continued to manufacture Riker electrics, initially at Elizabethport, New Jersey but then at Hartford, Connecticut. The Riker name was finally dropped in 1903.

 Riker was now interested in gasoline vehicles and he established the Riker Motor Vehicle Company in 1900. He built an 8hp two-cylinder car and a 16 hp four-cylinder car. However, in 1902 Riker formed an alliance with another automobile company in Bridgeport, Connecticut and designed a car to be called the Locomobile. The Riker name reappeared some years later from 1916 to 1921 on trucks previously named Locomobile but A.L.Riker was not involved.


Early Riker electric vehicles did not carry an emblem but did carry small nameplates attached to the body of the vehicle similar to the example shown below:

This is a nameplate for the Electric Vehicle Company    mjs
Size: 113mm wide 57mm high

The nameplate shown above was used after Riker sold his own company to the Electric Vehicle Company.

Riker Motor Vehicle Company vehicles carried a similar nameplate, see example shown at the top of this post. Original Riker nameplates are rare.