1907 Rolls Royce - chassis 60553

1907 Rolls Royce chassis 60553 when in the ownership of Millard Newman
Back in July, I wrote about two Rolls Royce Silver Ghost chassis imported in to the United States in 1907 by S.B. Stevens of Rome, NY. One of these cars (chassis 60553), the oldest Sliver Ghost in the United States, is shown here when owned by Millard Newman. This photo, undated, is another image from the John Webb De Campi archive. I was not ware of Mr. Newman's ownership of chassis 60553, but it should come as no surprise as he had arguably the finest collection of Rolls Royce motor cars in the US. We know the companion car (chassis 60565) was purchased from the Stevens family by James Melton. However, I don't know the ownership history of this car until it shows up in the hands of Mr. Newman (late 1970s or early 1980s?). I did find photos online of chassis 60553 (with this same body/paint in a state of dis-assembly - being repaired?). I believe Rick Carroll acquired the car from Mr. Newman and subsequently re-restored it. It's now in the collection of Robert Lee.

6 comments:

  1. The former Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost shown in your photograph cannot possibly be 60553. When Newman purchased it in Newport, Rhode Island, it had no numbers anywhere. It was Newman who plucked the number 60553 out of the air because he though that it was the first 40/50 hp. to enter the USA. However, what he did not realize at the time, the chassis was the former Seligman car and of course the very first 40/50 h.p. car delivered to the USA. I am stunned that the RROC and the RREC still allows this fraud to carry on. If there is anyone out there that wishes to bet me a large sum of money, I can easily prove beyond a shadow of a doubt, that the car pictured is absolutely no 60553. ucaneyho2@aol.com

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    1. Yo...i am jim stevens lll....My Grandfather is Samuel B. Stevens. Not only the 1st 40/50...the very FIRST car imported to U.S. shores period...by ANYONE....May 1907....2 wks later 60-565 arrived in June...Sam bought second car for His Mother...my Great Grand Mother. The SGA is very pompous and won't divulge shit to me other than to say that the two are back together again in a private collection. seems to me if i owned something of such notoriety, i would want to know everything connected with item....shrug.....i have the article "the Cryptic Case of the Stevens Ghost",,,written by Julie M. Fenster shortly after the battle of identities was resolved by ROLLS ROYCE in 1989. 565 sat on the side of the road in late 30's or early 40's for 50.00 w. no takers

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    2. Some time ago, I replied to an e-mail from the Grandson of my late friend Samuel B. Stevens after he contacted me regarding the Rolls-Royce 40/50hp now bearing chassis number 60553 As I found his use of foul language unexceptable to me, I ceased speaking to him. Obviously, to the experienced Rolls-Royce historians, they will confirm that the very first Rolls-Royce 40/50hp car to be delivered to the USA, was 60552. (The Seligman Open Drive Limousine by Barker & Co. Ltd,.) 60552. (the prior chassis number 60551 was in fact named by Rolls-Royce "The Silver Ghost" and was their first demonstrator) Then after 60552, there followed for USA delivery, 60553 to Mrs. Sarah Stevens of Rome New York (Samuel B. Stevens Jnr, Mother) a complete Barker Standard open touring car, followed by a bare rolling Chasis, number 60565, which had no body fitted to it that was delivered to Samuel B. Stevens Jnr. With regard to the statement uttered by Anonymous May 11th, 2015 that the ongoing matter regarding the stolen birthright of 60553 had been resolved by "Rolls Royce sic" in 1989 is completely untrue, furthermore, his statement "565 sat on the side of the road in late 30's or early 40's for 50.w.(sic) no takers" is nonsense. I am still waiting for the prestigeous clubs, RROC, The Ghost Club, and the RREC to challenge me over my statement, "that the Rolls-Royce 40/50hp replica bodied tourer, now bearing chassis number 60553, is not 60553 and has never been 60553, and that it is the chassis that Millard Newman purchased in Rhode Island from my late friend Kirkland Gibson as a numberless 40/50hp Rolls-Royce, and rebodied later at the instructions of Millard Newman. Furthermore the number 60553 was placed upon the former numberless chassis by Millard Newman, and later on, a host of other numbers were place upon the engine and other areas by Jonathan Harley of Harley Engineering. I hope that the reader will understand the blunt and caustic remarks made purely by myself, are being used to see if there are any officers of the named Rolls-Royce Clubs, that have the same integrity as I have when it comes to genuine descriptions and in particular the history of Rolls-Royce cars, of which the said clubs, in certain ways are guardians., me-thinks Not! MdeM

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  2. Thanks for your insight and comments. Do you know if this is the same car now owned by Robert Lee?

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  3. Jim -

    Thanks for reading the blog and your comments. Your grandfather was certainly a passionate car guy, and from what I can tell, owned some amazing cars (not simply Rolls-Royce). Are there any family photos of the cars owned still floating around? The two Roll-Royce (chassis 60553 & 60565) have both been re-restored and are in the collection of Robert M. Lee of NV.

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  4. Jim - thanks again for your emails. I'd love to see any old photos of your grandfather's cars, etc. I'd be happy to publish them on the blog, with your permission, as well. You can reach me at vintagemotoring@gmail.com. Thanks, Steve

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