November 29, 2022


Pope Motor Car Co. (1904-1909)
Toledo, Ohio 

This is a Pope-Toledo radiator script (1906-1909)   mjs
Size: 312mm wide 98mm high

In May 1903, the Pope Motor Car Company took over the business of the International Motor Car Company, which was building the Toledo motor car, and announced a new car to be called the Pope-Toledo for the 1904 model year at the same time as the Pope-Hartford (see Pope-Hartford). 

The Pope-Toledo was offered as 14 hp two-cylinder and 24 hp four-cylinder touring models. A four-cylinder stock Pope-Toledo was entered in several motor contests in California in November 1903 and won most of them. In October 1904, a Pope-Toledo finished third in the prestigious Vanderbilt Cup race. 

The Pope-Toledo was an expensive, well built automobile with copper water jackets and double chain drive but difficulties in the Pope organization resulted in Pope Toledo going into receivership in 1908. The last Pope-Toledos were 1909 models.


The first Pope-Toledo cars did not carry an emblem, see Pope-Toledo advertisement, which does show the "Pope Toledo" logo, and original period photos shown below:

Pope-Toledo advertisement (1904) ebay

Pope-Toledo ad close-up showing no emblem (1904)

Pope-Toledo car showing no emblem (1904)   dpl

However, the "Pope-Toledo" logo was displayed on a small brass nameplate usually mounted at the rear of the car or on the dash, see example shown below. These Pope-Toledo nameplates are rare.

This is a Pope-Toledo nameplate (1904-1905)    mjs
Size: 69mm wide 35mm high

The first Pope-Toledo hubcaps simply displayed the "Pope" name, see example shown below.

This is a Pope hubcap (c1903-1904)    ms

The Pope-Toledo hubcap was soon changed to the example shown below:

This is a Pope-Toledo hubcap (c1904-1906)   dkc

Most restored Pope-Toledo cars have elaborate "Pope-Toledo" scripts in the style of the "Pope-Toledo" logo mounted on the radiator core, see example shown above at the top of this post. Most Pope-Toledo radiator scripts used on restored cars are reproductions. 

The actual use of radiator scripts on the Pope-Toledo appears to have been limited, as most original period photos of Pope-Toledo cars do not show any radiator scripts, even on well publicised events, such as the Glidden Tour and major international races, where the use of radiator scripts might have been expected for publicity purposes, see examples shown below:

Pope-Toledo Gordon Bennett race car (1905)   cparama

Pope-Toledo taking part in the Glidden Tour (1906)   dpl

Pope-Toledo taking part in the Atlanta Good Roads Tour (1909)  dpl

However, there are examples of original period photos showing the Pope-Toledo radiator script The first examples of the Pope-Toledo radiator script seem to have appeared in 1906, see example shown below:

Pope-Toledo with radiator script (1906)  ebay

The following original photo from 1907 also shows a Pope-Toledo radiator script:

Pope-Toledo Model XV with radiator script (1907)  carfolio

It is possible that the "Pope-Toledo" radiator script was an optional attachment. Original "Pope-Toledo" radiator scripts are rare.

The "Pope-Toledo" name was also displayed on the brass sill plates, see example shown below:

Pope-Toledo sill plate (1906)   bonhams

This is the painted brass Pope-Toledo sill plate shown below. This Pope-Toledo sill plate is rare.

This is a Pope-Toledo sill plate (c1905-1909)    mjs
Size: 283mm wide 33mm high

The "Pope-Toledo" name continued to be displayed oh the hubcaps see example shown below:

This is a Pope-Toledo hubcap (1906)    bonhams

There was a change in the design of the Pope-Toledo nameplate from about 1906, although I cannot confirm this date. The new Pope-Toledo nameplate showed the following Pope-Toledo logo, which appeared in 1905:

Pope-Toledo logo (1905)

The new Pope-Toledo nameplate shown below is displayed at the rear of a restored Pope-Toledo model but the nameplate may originally have been displayed on the dashboard:

This is a Pope-Toledo nameplate (1906)    bonhams

This is the originally painted, brass Pope-Toledo nameplate shown below. This Pope-Toledo nameplate is rare.

This is a Pope-Toledo nameplate (c1906)    ms
Size: Unknown

There was a new Pope-Toledo hub emblem from about 1907, see restored example shown below:

Pope-Toledo hubcap (1907)    hyman

This is the painted Pope-Toledo hub emblem shown below. This Pope-Toledo hub emblem is scarce.

This is a Pope-Toledo hub emblem (c1907-1909)    mjs
Size: 76mm diameter   MM: None

There is no evidence that there was a Pope-Toledo radiator emblem. Emblem collectors should beware, as there are enamel versions of the Pope-Toledo hub emblem shown above, but these are certainly reproduction emblems. 

No comments:

Post a Comment