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Bay State and Rossel automobiles


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The Bay State and Rossel automobiles.  I have been reading through issues of “The Automobile” of year 1910, on Google books.  In the September 1910 issue, on pages 398-399 there is an article titled, “Mont Ventoux Hill Climb”.  Datelined August 29th of 1910, at Avignon, France, the article is about European cars and one American car undertaking timed races up an elevation from 970 feet to 6,216 feet.  The American automobile was named “Rossel” three times in print, and there is a photograph of the car where it crashed off the course at 60 MPH.


The reproduced photo, Fig. 4 from the article, is attached.  The caption for the photo identifies the crashed car as a “Six-cylinder Rossel car….”


I had never known of a Rossel make of automobile, and therefore some research was needed.  The history that I have found is very limited and incomplete.  However, regarding the Rossel I found on the web site American-Automobiles.com a reproduced ad for the Bay State Forty car, manufactured by the Bay State Auto Company, Boston.  The ad shows that a Rossel Drisko was the manager of the company, and the year category is 1906-1908.  The ad further says the engine of the Bay State car was a four cylinder.  Ref: https://american-automobiles.com/bay-state/


A second American-Automobiles.com posting for the Bay State and R. H. Long Company shows a year category of 1922-1924.  While this year category is well after the 1910 article about the Rossel automobile, it does show the Bay State automobile was equipped with a powerful six cylinder Continental engine.


There is a good deal of history of the Bay State automobile that I have not yet uncovered.  I am curious about the car named a Rossel.  It seems that Mr. Rossel Drisko named a car after himself, and since he was the plant manager of the Bay State Automobile Company, the “Rossel” car must have been a Bay State car.  It seems curious that a legally named automobile, Bay State, would be raced under the name of the production plant’s manager.  This seems to be especially so given that the hill climb race was in a foreign country where the automobile brand and manufacturer is competing for name recognition and sales.


One last analytical conclusion.  If the information is correct in the American-Automobiles.com article about the 1906-08 Bay State, by 1910 the company had a six cylinder engine in the “Rossel” car raced and crashed in France.


The Google book article is found at this URL, September 8, 1910, pages 398-399.    https://books.google.com/books?id=p8sqAAAAMAAJ&pg=PA948&dq=kissel&hl=en&newbks=1&newbks_redir=0&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwj767HY6efmAhXMGs0KHeqPApQQ6AEwBHoECAEQAw#v=onepage&q&f=false


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Hmmm.  Interesting photos.  The google website with the car photos shows what is apparently a 1908 Rossel.  The crashed Rossel in 1910 apparently is not the same car.  The 1908 Rossel (right side up) and the 1910 Rossel (that I turned upside down to approximate the '08 car) have different cowl dimensions.  The 1910 car has the race number 30 painted on a much longer cowl.


I may have gotten hung up on the odd name "Rossel", with Mr. Rossel Drisko at the Bay State factory.



08 Rossel Mont Ventoux France 01-02.jpg

10 Rossel The Automobile Sep 1, 1910 p399.JPG

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