Pacewagon

1895 Buck Wagon - Henry Ford

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Anyone interested in an interesting part of Henry Ford history?

I have a 1895 Hoopes, Bro & Darlington  Buck Wagon.

It was originally built for Henry Ford’s brother John in 1895.

Later gifted to Henry and then displayed in Greenfield Village. 

$8,000.00

 

Todd Harroun

Kalamazoo, MI

 

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I must be missing something, but how can the "original" shipping tag for a wagon built in 1895 sport a zip code?

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Yes, mid 1960’s for zip codes, the zip code is even quoted in the “authentication” letter.  The big ugly Phillips screws holding the “original” tag is a nice touch too.

 

Buyer beware on this one, too many red flags. Natural wood and not painted, modern wheel hubs....when it doesn’t feel old, then it’s not....

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The Michigan Ave. address on the tag is the site of a current-day Ford dealer and Hoopes themselves went under in 1972 which explains the tag, but it looks like their core business was more to do with making wheels than anything else.

 

It doesn't really make sense that in the era someone would have ordered a wagon from hundreds of miles away when there were so many more options closer to home.  I'd bet that perhaps Hoopes rebuilt or made new wheels for a restoration project in the final years before they went under.  

Edited by W_Higgins (see edit history)

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The Chinese combination regular/phillips screws they put THROUGH the ID tag are a nice touch. I wonder why they left off the web address? Maybe you just have to find them on Facebook...

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Maybe it is a north of the 49th thing but I have never heard of a "Buck" wagon.  All the farmers I knew from back in the 40's, and they were in their 80's and 90's called them buck board wagons and lots of them were used regularly up to and past the mid 50's.

Edited by Tinindian (see edit history)
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If those screws were authentic 1890's they would be torx drive.

 

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Hoopes Bro & Darlington produced wagon (and later car) wooden wheels. They did not incorporate until 1903. That probably accounts for both the tag and the new wagon wheels.

Sothebys descriptions are only as accurate as those they pay to authenticate are. In this case even a rudimentary glance at historical data would have prevented this apparent misinformation.

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Looks like the hitch was an optional extra (one or two horse). May be the plan was to make a motorbuggy.

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I wonder WHY that tag is affixed to it like a licence plate.

 

No one I know would display the original invoice of their car pop-riveted to the fender behind clear Plexiglas.

 

Craig

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First of all, I think this is a "Buggy" chassis, and not a buckboard. Buckboards were designed for "trucking" stuff, typically had the seat up front and a decent sized box. They were usually un-sprung (thus the term buck) and more robust vis-a-vis wheels. This buggy is curious for many reasons. It has no dashboard? The seat is very utilitarian compared to most I have seen. The steering is standard, and can take single or double shafts. I bought and sold this buggy last year, a very nicely appointed one from circa 1900. The double shafts hook to wagon at same point as single shafts, but have a double "whiffle tree". An interesting feature of the posted wagon is it appears to have a foot operated "sprague-type" brake. As for provenance of the posted item, and whether it is a "buckboard", I'll leave that to whomever puts down the cash. BTW, I bought this one for $400 and sold it a month later for $600, didn't have a place to keep it.

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Edited by Gunsmoke (see edit history)
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Well crap, where were you guys prior to me hitting that “place Bid” button?

i knew it, things didn’t add up with me either.

if this actually was what the auction company was claiming well then it needed to be in a museum not at a small auction in Michigan.  

I just sent the Greenfield Village Museum an email asking if they have any knowledge of this piece.

Ya I know, probably should have done that prior to my winning bid.  

I have two thoughts;

The story is either total BS or maybe it was sent back to the factory for a total restoration at a much later date. 

The wood is all new, no question there, but the iron work is old.  

Maybe I will go back to my original thoughts, make a table out of it. 

If I get a response from the museum I will post it.

thank you for your posts. 

Todd

 

 

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B. John Ford was born in 1919 and died in 2001.  He owned Bob Ford in Dearborn.  I'll definitely have an improved understanding in the future about the reliabillity of statements made by Mr. Linn and Mr. Yagoda, as well as the statements of those who quote them without research.

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No, Henry did have a younger brother John - 1865-1927.

Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_Ford

incorrectly listed his siblings on his page. (Link above + seen in top pic below)

But on the family tree Wikipedia also links -John correctly appears (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_Ford_family_tree - bottom pic below).

 

I think the thoughts re. it possibly being sent back to Hoops Brothers & Darlington (1867-1972) could be on to something. The company was reorganized at several points and the general information can be found here: https://digitalcommons.wcupa.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1007&context=hist_facpub

(Bottom pic below)

 

I’m sure the Henry Ford will have record on it. Remember, ‘restoration’ meant something very different until very recently. I’m surprised they didn’t reupholster the Lincoln chair!

 

Good luck,

Ben P.

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Edited by Ben P.
Link typo (see edit history)

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9 minutes ago, Ben P. said:

No, Henry did have a younger brother John - 1865-1927.

Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_Ford

incorrectly listed his siblings on his page. (Link above + seen in top pic below)

But on the family tree Wikipedia also links -John correctly appears (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_Ford_family_tree - bottom pic below).

 

 

 

StanleyRegister nailed it.  B. John Ford (the name on the tag) owned Bob Ford in Dearborn.  That is the address of the dealership on the tag.  Everything fits.  

 

  

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1 minute ago, W_Higgins said:

 

 

StanleyRegister nailed it.  B. John Ford (the name on the tag) owned Bob Ford in Dearborn.  That is the address of the dealership on the tag.  Everything fits.  

 

  

That is correct. I’m saying Henry did also have a younger brother John (1865-1927) and the two got conflated in the ‘authentication’.

Separating the facts here. 

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13 minutes ago, Ben P. said:

That is correct. I’m saying Henry did also have a younger brother John (1865-1927) and the two got conflated in the ‘authentication’.

Separating the facts here. 

 

I see.  Since nobody was debating the existence of Henry's brother I thought things were going off in a different direction.

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Oh no, you’re good W Higgins. Shows the magic of this forum in putting heads together. I got hung up on the incorrect Wikipedia (which seems like I’d learn not to trust) listing.

In fact, I’d have to go to a Russian ‘history’ book to find better misinformation than can be found on the standard Wikipedia page....

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3 hours ago, Pacewagon said:

Well crap, where were you guys prior to me hitting that “place Bid” button?

i knew it, things didn’t add up with me either.

if this actually was what the auction company was claiming well then it needed to be in a museum not at a small auction in Michigan.  

I just sent the Greenfield Village Museum an email asking if they have any knowledge of this piece.

Ya I know, probably should have done that prior to my winning bid.  

I have two thoughts;

The story is either total BS or maybe it was sent back to the factory for a total restoration at a much later date. 

The wood is all new, no question there, but the iron work is old.  

Maybe I will go back to my original thoughts, make a table out of it. 

If I get a response from the museum I will post it.

thank you for your posts. 

Todd

 

 

 

I'm sorry for  your bum purchase.  This sort of thing happens all too much.  Hopefully you'll discover something positive and documentable in the process.  There are two ways you can move forward with it -- either represent it accurately for what it is after you've learned all you can about it, or tell the next guy it was used to haul Abraham Lincoln's body to the railroad station! 

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I might be able to help with the provenance. I have the best Notary Public money can buy.

 

Bernie

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