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Corcoran lamps


Jeff Corcoran
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Jeff, as an enthusiastic collector of brass lamps I'm very interested in any history you can provide.  Is there a link you can provide to any internet resources for such info?   I recall meeting a descendant of the Davis part of Gray and Davis and he was working on a history but never heard any more about that company.   Let me know what you can share.  

Thanks,

Terry

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11 hours ago, Terry Bond said:

Jeff, as an enthusiastic collector of brass lamps I'm very interested in any history you can provide.  Is there a link you can provide to any internet resources for such info?   I recall meeting a descendant of the Davis part of Gray and Davis and he was working on a history but never heard any more about that company.   Let me know what you can share.  

Thanks,

Terry

Terry

Over years of collecting, I gathered the information provided from numerous sources- none on the internet.

However there is a story about the first Chevrolet being built in the Corcoran Plant in Detroit.

 

Family bible, newspaper clips etc.

The information provided is general. Is there a specific question you have. If so, feel free to ask and I will see what I can find.

 

Jeff Corcoran

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I was actively participating in the earlier thread on the company history.  I have heard that a book was published many years ago detailing the history of the John Brown company.  I've not been able to confirm that or locate a copy if it exists.  Further research is needed but too much is competing for attention at the moment.  Perhaps as a retirement project i'll begin working on a book of automotive lamps.  I know that books have been published on carbide bicycle lamps, but don't think a reference work has ever been produced on automobile lamps.  It would be an interesting project for sure. 

Terry

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I've been told, but with no supporting documentation, that my 1912 Buick Model 35 was supposed to have Corcoran lamps.  I've also been told, by someone whose father was a Buick dealer back in the day, that cars were shipped to the dealer without lamps, and the dealer was expected tp buy lamps locally for delivery to the customer installed on the car.  The lamps on my Buick are very nice, but unmarked, so I have no idea where they came from.  If your research turns up any documentation of Corcoran supplying lamps to Buick, I'd appreciate hearing from you.. Many thanks!

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The 1909-1910 Buick Models 16 and 17 came with Corcoran head lights, fairly large although I don't have the size in front of me, and I believe the chimney with four holes on each side is correct for both years and models.  In most cases, particularly on lower dollar cars, and on early ought/early teen cars, yes, lights were an option, and you could buy them after market and put any make that fit.

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Documentation for a specific application would most likely come from the car manufacturer.  The brand of lamp however may not have actually been specified in sales literature or even  a parts list.  Photographs or catalog illustrations in factory literature would serve to identify the lamps to a collector with a good kowledge of what the lamps looked like.  The Corcoran's used on early Buicks were distinctive, however they were also available as aftermarket lamps so they could be purchased and used on anything.  IL'vee also seen the bullet-backet Gray and Davis lamps used on early Buicks but don't have any idea what the factory documentation might indicate.  Another reason to support the AACA Library and Research Center. 

 

Back in the day, car owners had their own favorites, or perhaps the dealers had lamps some parts salesman give the a good deal on or incentive to install their lamps.  It becomes difficult to say that a particular vehicle used a certain lamp brand unless that factory documentation exists.   It is true that a lot of early cars came without lamps, and some that lamps were optional extra cost items for.  So, a thrifty buyer back in the early 1900s might save a few bucks buying a car without lamps, and re-using was was saved from a previous car.   Back them there was not concern for keeping the car totally authentic, so lamps came from a lot of different sources.  I wish there was a list of what was actually supplied (or recommended) for specific cars.

Pair Corcoran sidelamps restored.jpg

Buick Corcoran.jpg

Buick Gray and Davis.jpg

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17 hours ago, Jeff Corcoran said:

I have been encouraged to commit to writing the "Corcoran" history. But like everythin else, time flies by.

 

I think a book on the early auto lamps would be wonderful.

 

Jeff Corcoran

That would be an interesting read!

 

To add some fuel on the fire, you'll have to include a chapter on the 'EXPORT' lenses for vehicles sold in Europe and other countries around the world, and how they are different from domestic market lenses.  I posted a 1939 RHD Studebaker that was sold new in England with 'EXPORT' headlight lenses. http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/showthread.php?46573-39-40s-lets-see-em!&highlight=whitby  A peek at the 1934-46 Studebaker Chassis Parts manual shows 'domestic', 'export' and lenses for 'Holland'.  Perhaps they were amber as opposed to clear in Pre-war Holland?

 

Craig

Edited by 8E45E (see edit history)
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I have EXPORT headlight lenses in my 1939 L5 Studebaker. I was under the impression it meant RHD (or RH Control as Studebaker called it), which means the light goes left rather than right, esp. on dip. In fact the lenses might even be Corcoran? Chryco lenses of that era were also Corcoran I think? They seem to be the odd shaped lenses (elliptical rather than circular).

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6 hours ago, Spinneyhill said:

I have EXPORT headlight lenses in my 1939 L5 Studebaker. I was under the impression it meant RHD (or RH Control as Studebaker called it), which means the light goes left rather than right, esp. on dip. In fact the lenses might even be Corcoran? Chryco lenses of that era were also Corcoran I think? They seem to be the odd shaped lenses (elliptical rather than circular).

There is a fellow car collector who owns a 1938 Graber body Dodge cabriolet, LHD originally equipped with the EXPORT lenses.  He would like to find another EXPORT lens as one was cracked, and has temporarily replaced it with a domestic lens.  Major difference appears the EXPORT lens is more convex than the domestic lens.  

 

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38308938585_c5b79a249c_k.jpg

 

27408016609_a9de4a8d1c_k.jpg

 

Craig 

Edited by 8E45E (see edit history)
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  • 2 years later...

Hello all.I have pair of brass Side Lamps passed down from my father. The knurled brass wick control knob has "CORCORAN CINTI,O" cast into the face. I am believing that they are off a 1911 Buick Model 33. Just searching for information and eventual a market to sell them. Appreciate your thoughts.

IMG_3202.thumb.jpeg.01daabae2d2b9588c2002e2f672f138d.jpegIMG_3205.thumb.jpeg.31783c7b1e1e5cfd8b745fa7c1dbcb35.jpegIMG_3203.thumb.jpeg.4e2efcba5503e7300b56831a39b68182.jpegIMG_3204.thumb.jpeg.60bf5f4ece123ee229fb6a7a6b7261c8.jpeg

DSCN1321.JPG

Edited by timan42 (see edit history)
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