February 07, 2019


George W. Davis Motor Car Co. (1908-1928)

Automotive Corp. of America (1928-1929)

Richmond, Indiana

This is a Davis radiator emblem (1926-1928)     mjs
Size: 77mm wide 38mm high   MM: Unknown

George W. Davis was a well established buggy wagon builder when he established the George W. Davis Motor Car Company in 1908 and his first cars were simply motorized buggies. The Davis became a 35 hp four-cylinder motor car in 1911 and was offered in touring and five-passenger torpedo styles. A six-cylinder model was also introduced in 1914. From 1916 only six-cylinder models were offered until 1927 when an eight-cylinder model appeared. The cars were successful with good sales in America and overseas.

The Davis was a well built assembled car offered in a wide range of body styles and attractive two-tone paint schemes. After 1920 the Davis began to lose its market position and sales began to suffer. In February 1928 the company was taken over by the Automotive Corporation of America but only a few cars were made that year before production ceased.


The first Davis motor buggies are unlikely to have carried an emblem but may have had a small maker's nameplate/serial plate.

The first Davis cars in 1911 had a blue and white radiator emblem, see example below. This Davis radiator emblem is extremely rare.

This is the first Davis radiator emblem (1911-c1914)     sam
Size: 77mm wide 38mm high     MM: Unknown

The Davis name was also displayed on the hub caps. The 1912 advertisement shown below has a photo of a Davis 40 showing a radiator emblem and named hub caps. The detail is not very clear but it can be seen that the hub caps had the name "DAVIS" in block letters:

This is a Davis ad showing a radiator emblem (1912)     tha

The Davis radiator emblem design was changed in about 1914 to include a red ribbon along the bottom of the emblem showing the company name and location, see example below. This particular Davis radiator emblem is unusual and extremely rare.

This is a thin curved Davis radiator emblem (1914)      dnc
Size: 77mm wide 38mm high     MM: None

The metal base of this radiator emblem is very thin and the emblem is curved left to right. It appears to have been specially made to fit a concave shaped radiator before enameling. The Davis Six Fifty model built for 1914 is the only Davis car with a concave shaped radiator and is believed to have carried the radiator emblem shown above, see Davis Six Fifty ad shown below:

This is a Davis Six Fifty ad showing a concave shaped radiator and emblem (1914)   tma

The more usual Davis radiator emblem with this design uses a thicker metal base, is domed but was made to fit onto a flat radiator. It can be found in plain metal or plated, see example below. This Davis radiator emblem is rare and may have been used on flat radiator models at the same time as the curved radiator emblem described earlier or shortly thereafter. This Davis radiator emblem continued in use until 1925.

This is a Davis radiator emblem (c1914-1925)      mjs
Size: 77mm wide 38mm high     MM: Early None (later D L Auld)

Beware, as there is a Pulfer reproduction of this Davis radiator emblem, which is flat rather than domed, has no maker's mark and has a bright orange-red band at the bottom.

The Davis hub caps followed the radiator emblem design, see example below:

This is the Davis hubcap design (c1914-1925)    dkc

In 1926 the Davis radiator emblem design was changed to a domed, plated metal emblem with the Davis name finished in blue enamel, see example above at the top of this post. This Davis radiator was used until Davis production ceased in 1928. Relatively few Davis cars were built using this emblem and most examples of this emblem appear to be unused new-old stock emblems. This Davis radiator emblem is scarce.

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