JTFS

Rumble Seat Blanket

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@edinmassMany people do think of Alpaca as a type of wool, and it's most commonly referred-to as that. Experts refer to it as Alpaca fiber, or Alpaca fleece. The same thing seems to apply to Mohair and Cashmere, which are from different species of goats. The descriptions of the related processes for manufacturing silk plush below are out of an early 1900s manufacturing facility fire insurance underwriters' handbook (Fire Insurance Inspection & Underwriting, The Spectator Company, C.C. Dominge and W.O. Lincoln, 1918). So it's somewhat technical with aspects of risk interjected.

"SILK PLUSH—The cop yarn as used in this territory is received in skeins from the mills making same, and is woven by the local mills into the various materials. In silk and plush works, it forms the strands for the warp and filling for the backing of plush goods. The plush or piling is made of silk, cotton and mohair threads woven into a single strand.

Plush is made on a weaving loom similar to a silk loom with the exception that two backings are used between which is woven the silk piling for the plush. As the woven piece leaves the loom a rapidly moving knife cuts the piling which leaves two pieces of plush. See Plush.

"Striking out" machines, "tigers," "brushes" are then used. These are similar in design with the exception that the wires forming the comb are heavier for the first process. The machine consists of a wooden roller spiked with wire combs over which the goods pass. They are employed to remove any loose piling and to whip it up. The "tigers" tear out most of the loose stuff, which is found on the floor. As this is silk the hazard is light. Very little lint is made.

The "Nellies" is next employed. This machine is a four-sided wooden frame in upright position. At the bottom, a wooden roller with light wire comb; at top a similar roller with bristles. The plush is wound on a centre roller, the upper roller turned by hand. As it turns -an employee "batters" the plush to open up the piling. It then enters a dry room as the plush is put on the "Nellies" wet.

At the "striking out" machine, the plush is attached to a strip of cambric which is first drawn over the rollers and brushes so that as soon as the machine is started the end of the plush will be combed. At this machine the material is first steamed to soften the texture.

The cambric cloths are dried in a dryer similar to laundry drier.

Silk is woven on a single loom.

Winders and spoolers are similar to those in knitting mills. Dyeing is a wet process; aniline colors, muriatic acid, bichromate of potash and nitrate of soda being used.

COP—The top or head of a thing. The conical roll of thread formed on the spindle of a spinning machine.

COP YARN—(used for weaving  cloth) - A loose-twisted thread of  cotton, silk, wool or mixture.

PLUSH—Is of different grades and weaves. Cop yam (cotton and worsted) is for warp and woof.  The plush piling is silk, cotton and mohair woven together in one single strand. The cop yarn, which furnishes the top and   bottom body fabric, is woven together with the plush piling by means of a weaving machine, and a knife attachment separates the top and bottom warps or fabrics. Cop yarns come in skeins. In this process very little lint or flox is produced. The "tigers" or rough combers of plush, however, produce considerable silk flox which should be cleaned up daily. See Silk Plush."

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Posted (edited)

edinmass: I just confirmed with the President of the Sanford Historical Society up in Maine that the Sanford Mills did manufacture many laprobes for various automobile manufacturers (including Packard) as OEM accessories - but interestingly, they all bore the Chase brand. Since Chase was the exclusive marketing arm and a partner in Sanford Mills, and since Sanford was the first manufacturer of laprobes in the US, that may have given them the clout to be able to get away with not putting the Packard brand, or other auto companies brands on their laprobes. It is also possible that the Chase brand alone carried such weight in the marketplace that the auto manufacturers preferred to have the Chase brand on them.

Given this, my laprobe could have been purchased from Packard, another auto manufacturer, or from Chase. Given the information provided by the museum, and assuming Packard did not have multiple suppliers for exactly the same laprobe, there will be no way to determine conclusively whether a specific high-end Chase laprobe was purchased as an OEM accessory from Packard and other auto manufacturers, or not...

Edited by Intassage (see edit history)
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Don't want to derail the conversation but thought this was a good place to mention a car blanket that I ended up with. I would have to get it out to measure but it is approximately 6'X4'. My great aunt had this in her cars till she stopped driving which was around 1962, she was in her 80s. The last car it road in was a 1954 Studebaker. When my Dad bought 54 from her when she had to go into a nursing home the blanket came with it. I would guess it is from at least the 30s. Has a dark gray wool back and what appears to be real animal hyde front. It is a black/brown color with hair about an inch long. I always thought it was bear for no good reasons. I also thought it may be buffalo. Very heavy and warm.

 

Anyone run across anything like this?

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I'll see if I can dig out some of my Packard robes. They look identicle to the Cadillac one I posted, different tag. They are not marked Chase. While I have no doubt the Chase robe was very high quaility as I posted, My best guess is they sold directly to dealerships, but were not "factory authorized" accessories. Maybe early on they were exclusive offerings without the factory tag? The earliest factory tagged lap robe I have ever seen and was convinced was correct and sold with the car when new was a 1918 Pierce Arrow robe, and the tag was different then the later series robes/tags which are identicle for Packard/Pierce/Cadillac/Stude. I am convinced robes with pockets and built in had warming ports are from the carriage era. The "horse blankets" are VERY heavy, and are just too much for use in a car. They also tend to be very, very large. Great research on the Chase robe connection. I'll see if I can find some photos with cars when they were new. Ed

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@edinmassI look forward to seeing the Packard labels. Below I have included several quotes from the email response from Harland Eastman, President of the Sanford-Springvale Historical Society. Particularly interesting is the last comment. Even the museum is not able to definitively distinguish which among its collection of nearly 100 robes were clearly made for an automobile.

 

- "L. C. Chase was associated with the Goodall industries from the time Thomas Goodall became a manufacturer of woolen blankets and – some later - horse blankets in Troy, NH in the early 1850’s.  Chase was the sales agency for Goodall products from that early date.  Chase and Thomas Goodall worked closely together when Thomas re-established himself in Sanford, Maine in 1867."

 

- "All carriage robes made in Sanford had a Chase label."

 

- "As motor vehicles gradually replaced horse drawn carriages the robes became known as laprobes.  I do not know when they stopped making them. Goodall manufactured for many firms including Packard."

 

- "The Sanford-Springvale Historical Society has a collection of nearly 100 carriage robes.  We have only two that were clearly made for an automobile."

 

@Jim Bollman I hadn't noticed the tag on mine until I took a close look. When I did, I noticed a small "Chase" label. It's a very small label in one of the corners. The font on that label could help determine the date. Even the non-fir variations of laprobes are very heavy. Mine, pictured in an earlier post, is has two different shades of silk plush on each side. It weighs at least 10 pounds and has similar dimensions to yours.

 

 

 

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Took me a while to find this. 

IMG_2878.PNG

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Edinmass, I should recognize that car brand in your old photo. What is it, please? 

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I'll let Ed answer that question!  Clue:  Don't be fooled by the headlights!

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Who would buy a Pierce Arrow with drum headlights and no archer? Wood wheels with dual sidemounts,  single pilot ray, sidemount mirrors, be a member of AAA with a radiator bar badge, and after all the strange lack of options, have a uniformed chauffeur- and then order a 90.00 lap robe with initials and the 15.00 matching pillow? STRANGE! 

 

 

 

 

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And it appears to have the long wheelbase (143"), too.....

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Well with my passion for closed cars , I sure wouldn't banish that P.A. from my garage for drips on the floor ! Met a CCCA gent here with a drum headlight P.A. , early '30 something. Said it was originally sold in Canada where this was required. What else can factor in this ?  - Carl

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