1911 Packard Fore-Door Limousine


VMCCA print of Thomas McKean's 1911 Packard Fore-Door Limousine

This car, a 1911 Packard Model 30 (4 cylinder - 30hp) Fore-Door Limousine (engine no. 16416), was owned at the time by Thomas McKean - as stated in this photo issued by the VMCCA.

Of the 9 different body styles offered on the Model 30 chassis in 1911, the Fore-Door Limousine was the most expensive at $5750. The Fore-Door Limousine body had been introduced in 1910, but 1911 brought new finish details to the Packard line. The standard paint finish was now Packard blue (lower body and door panels) striped with Packard gray (the first year since 1904, that Packards were not blue and yellow). The upper body, bonnet, radiator, frame, fenders, splashers, battery and tool box, and moldings were all black. Finally, the wheels, axles, springs, and other running gear below the frame were also black and striped in Packard gray. As for the interior, the standard closed car came equipped with black front seats in hand-buffed, straight grain leather - tufted. The rear compartment (below the belt) featured blue goatskin, tufted and blue broadcloth, untufted for the roof and quarters - blue carpet to match.

From the Packard Company's newsletter/publication of 1911
This car would have been sold out of Packard's Philadelphia dealership, managed by E. B. Jackson (who would go on to lead the New York dealership in 1915). The car was sold to an unknown buyer apparently living in Bala-Cynwyd (an area of wealthy suburbs around Philadelphia know as the main line). It was inherited by the chauffeur and later sold to Frank A. Weingarten, who sold it to Thomas McKean. Mr. McKean lived in the area but was librarian of the Belcourt Museum in Newport, RI -  and a significant early collector of cars. In addition to the Packard Limousine, his collection included a 1902 Pierce, a 1905 Ford touring, a 1904 Cadillac rear-entrance touring, a 1907 Ford roaster, a 1905 Mercedes, and a 1909 Franklin touring. Thomas McKean is also the namesake of the AACA's Thomas McKean Memorial Cup for the best book of automotive history.

The car passed to Curt Blake, another well-know collector and co-founder of the Friendly's ice cream chain. Since 1987, the car has found a home with John P. Jones of Prospect, CT who has a number of lovely early Packards.

1911 Packard Fore-Door Limousine (photo credit: John P. Jones)

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